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Growing a Herb Garden

Easy to grow and lovely to have in your home or outdoors, a herb garden is a great choice for hydroponics beginners and professionals alike. Whether you’d like to grow herbs from seeds or simply transplant cuttings for an indoor herb garden, you’ll need a few simple things like an adequate spot with plenty of sunlight. Make sure to feed your plants with a bloom booster for higher yields and higher quality.

 

Herb Ideas to Grow in Your Garden

Ensure that you use hydroponic nutrients and provide the soil with enough moisture before planting. Don’t forget to remove stones and other large sediments by raking the soil’s top level. Removing excess salts with a flush product helps herbs to mature faster. Planting either in the early morning or late afternoon prevents the herbs from being affected by strong sunlight and wilting.

Coriander and dill can be sown into your garden’s soil directly from March. Other seeds such as chives, parsley, and basil can be sown from January to April indoors until the weather is nicer. Cuttings of mint, marjoram, sage, and rosemary can be taken from plants from late-summer until early-autumn.

Thyme. Neutral to alkaline soil that is well-drained will provide you with healthy plants. You can use the leaves both fresh or dried in dishes, especially in French cuisines. After flowering, make sure to lightly trim the herb for bushiness.

A few seeds per area are ideal, as thyme seeds are extremely small. Press them lightly into your soil and wait two to three weeks for seedlings. Damping off disease can occur, so you need to keep checking your garden.

ThymeMint. Great for food and tea, the leaves have a strong scent. It’s advised to grow mint in a container or a pot, as they can easily become an invasive plant. Plant your mint seeds in soil rich in nutrients and moisture.

Sow in the soil directly around April or May, giving the plants approximately 20 inches of space between each other. You can expect germination between ten and 16 days after planting, however, as it is an invasive plant, having it in containers are advised.

Basil. You can use the leaves dried or fresh as they grow in your meals. Basil likes well-drained to dry soils, rich in nutrients, and in a sunny spot. You’ll need to pinch out any growing tips, as it delays flowering and encourages bushiness. Regular sowing, however, will help a summer supply.

Sow two seeds for every spot or pair thin and strong plants from cuttings. You’ll see germination as quickly as four days after sowing, watering when the soil is almost dry. When the seedlings have their true leaves, you can transplant them into two-inch diameter pots should you wish to.

BasilRosemary. Neutral to alkaline and well-drained soil under the sun grows strong rosemary plants. The fresh sprigs are typically steeped in olive oil or vinegar and the fresh or dried leaves used in food for flavouring. Pruning after flowering encourages bushiness and removing any weak or dead growth in spring promotes healthy growth.

You can plant rosemary from late-May when the soil is warm, although indoor planting can be more reliable from mid-February until mid-April. 15 to 25 days later, you can expect rosemary to start germinating.

Dill. Choose a sunny spot in neutral to slightly acidic, well-drained soil to plant dill. Perfect for Scandinavian cooking, dill leaves are ideal fresh or dried (often cut in spring or summer) and the seeds can also be used dried (harvested in summer).

If you’re a gardening beginner, dill is ideal to start your herb garden. Dill’s big seeds make them easier to plant and handle, with germination after a week or two.

Chives. With a mild flavour of garlic, chives’ flowers and leaves are great for cooking. This plant prefers well-drained soil with plenty of nutrients and in the sun. After flowering, chives should be cut down to the ground so that fresh leaves grow.

A quick germinator and easy to grow, chives need soil that is evenly moist before you can start seeing germination after ten days.

Sage. You can use dried or fresh sage leaves in tea and leaves to flavour food such as meat. When planting, make sure that your soil is neutral to alkaline and well-drained. To promote bushiness, hard prune sage in the beginning of spring.

Although slow to germinate, keeping the soil with even moisture will make sure that sage germinates 21 days after being sown.

 

When to Grow Herbs

Hardy annual plants: can be sown in open ground, their entire life cycle happens in a year.

Biennial plants: their life cycle takes two years, and these plants are less common than annual and perennials.

Perennial plants: these plants only need to be planted once, as they come back every year and become dormant during winter.

When growing herbs outdoors and from seed, you can choose from biennial and hardy annual herbs such as parsley, dill, coriander, and chamomile. These can be sown starting March and until August in intervals of three to four weeks to make sure that you have a continuous supply of fresh herbs. If you’re planting dill, make sure that you sow it directly where you want it to be long-term, as dill is difficult to successfully transplant.

Chives, rosemary, sage, and fennel are perennial herbs better sown in spring under covers, to be potted when they grow. On hot, sunny days you’ll be able to catch the scent of these herbs together, which provide a great addition to any garden.

Should you have limited space, herbs are great for planting in your garden borders or in flower beds. This also adds a lovely mix of scents and colours, with herbs like fennel attracting butterflies and bees due to their yellow flowers.

 

Issues That May Arise with Your Herb Garden

Thyme, sage, and rosemary are at risk of being affected by the rosemary beetle, an insect that eats herbs’ flowers and foliage. With both the adult insects and their larvae feeding on the plants, you may see most of the damage occur between late-summer and spring.

These insects are approximately 7mm long, with shiny green and purple stripes on their bodies. Their larvae are grey-white and has dark stripes running alongside their bodies. Affected plants are often reduced to stumps of damaged tissue and grey-brown discolouration.

Cold weather or day length change during the seasons can make herbs such as basil and dill to bolt. Bolting happens in plants approaching maturity, causing them to prematurely seed. Make sure to plant herbs in rich soil and with plenty of space to prevent bolting.

Mist rust is caused by the fungus Puccina menthae and it can affect mint and marjoram herbs, causing yellow, orange, and black spots on leaves and stems. The herbs can see big areas of tissue die, with the spring shoots being distorted and pale.  

The damping off disease is caused by fungus-like organisms (such as Rhizoctonia, Pythium, Fusarium, and Phytophthora) and fungi. Poor air circulation and high levels of humidity are known to be causing factors, with seedling collapsing and being covered with white mould.

Plate with Herbs

You can enjoy your fresh herb garden and cook delicious meals especially in summer, however, growing them indoors gives you a great indoor herb garden all year around. Get in touch with our team to know more about how our products can help your herb garden to grow strong and healthy.

Our Blog: Hydroponic Tips & Tricks

Whether you are an expert who already has a thriving crop of healthy plants, or you are trying to grow your very first hydroponic yield, we can help you to grow the strong and healthy crops you have always wanted.

Here at Plant Magic Plus, our team of gardening experts work very hard behind the scenes to provide you with the high quality nutrients, additives and growing media that will help you to get the most out of your growing plants.

But we understand that successful horticulture is about more than just having good quality chemicals, nutrients or fetilisers, that's why we have written this blog to provide you with the insights, tips and techniques you will need to give your garden that extra magic touch.

From helpful advice about watering your plants in soil and a guide to magnesium nutrients, to top tips about growing hydroponic vegetables and a comprehensive overview of microbes, we’ve got everything covered.

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