A few weeks ago, we learned how planting herbs like rosemary, sage, basil, lavender, peppermint and African marigold around your house can help you repel mosquitoes. Today, we will teach you how to tend to your green collection. Here are a few things to consider:
Type of container
If you grew your herbs from seeds in a planter or nursery bed, your herbs will probably need to do some transplanting soon. If you have some garden space, you can simply transfer them to a well-prepared flower bed. But if you’re more of an urban gardener with little or no garden space, then the wonderful news is that you can grow your herbs in a pot, a mason jar, up-cycle an old pallet board into a a vertical column, use an old shoe rack, old cups and jars.
The type of container you use will be determined by the size of herb or plant you are looking to plant. The container should have drainage holes to let water out and should be big enough to hold your plant and cute enough to look at (no need having an ugly indoor garden). If you’re on a tight budget and have to make do with recycled containers, be sure to strip any ugly labels off.
Source of light
Most plants require plenty of light, about four-five hours of good sunlight. You can place your plant holder on a windowsill, on a kitchen counter, next to a door that stays open most of the day or if you have a balcony, you can hang the pots or place them on the balcony floor.
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Soil and fertiliser
Next, you need some soil and mulch. Easily available natural fertiliser options are chicken droppings, cow dung, leaves and left over food.
Water, water, water. Water is life, even for plants. You do not want to be that lady with a house full of dead plants. Ensure your plants get adequate water, if you are going to be away for a few days get someone to take care of your herbs.
Most herbs do not require frequent watering. In fact, some herbs like sage do not do well when over-watered. Poke the soil in your container, if it feels dry, flaky and is peeling off the sides of the pot, it’s time to get sprinkling. If it feels soft and moist, you can skip the day without watering.
Enjoy your herbs
After a few weeks of some tender loving care, your herbs will be ready for harvesting and you will have fresh-tasting ingredients for your meals. Enjoy them in your food and as green décor in and around your house.
- Michelle Langi is a furniture and interior designer and a do-it-yourself enthusiast