If you’re like me, you probably spend a good amount of time in the kitchen either eating or cooking. You might even have a wide variety of dried spices to choose from that you use in a lot of your cooking or meals. Recently I’ve started to grow my own herbs to be used in place of the dried variety. These are very easy to grow right in your window and trimming them to use only makes them grow back in more full, so you have a never-ending supply of fresh herbs. Here are some of the different types of herbs I grow that you may want to consider for your kitchen.
Cilantro is an aromatic herb that is used in a wide range of uses for it’s unique savory flavor. This herb is easy to grow from a seed and as long as it does not experience freezing conditions it will prosper year round in a window box. This great spice can be used in Mexican style dishes like guacamole, Spanish rice, salsa, and more for a unique addition to flavor. Along with the great taste this plant helps clear heavy metals from the body that might have otherwise been mistaken for needed nutrients. Grow this right in your kitchen year round to give your food an added layer of flavor.
Thyme is a useful plant that has a reputation as a natural remedy for respiratory problems and has antiseptic properties. One of the ingredients in this herb is even used in the mouthwash Listerine. Thyme is extremely flexible and can be added to soups, meats, salads or about any other recipe you can think of. Thyme is great for indoor growing because of the small size that it will stay throughout it’s life.
This herb is another that is tasty, has a detoxing effect on the liver, and is a good source of fiber. Like thyme, basil can be added to practically almost any dish for a good deep flavor that isn’t rivaled by many other spices. One of the most famous uses of this herb include pesto, which is used on a variety of foods around the world. Along with its’ unique taste basil leaf is thought to help calm stomach pains and indigestion. Only a half of a teaspoon of dry or fresh basil leaves can help alleviate these symptoms. One use that I use of this plant is for stings and bug bites. Chewing up one or two leaves and applying to the affected area will help alleviate the pain almost immediately and help draw out the venom.
One herb that is common but most people will not grow is parsley because of the belief it has no use that is not ornamental. Instead of leaving it on the side of your plate you should eat it at the end of your meal to reduce bad breath. Along with this effect it is full of vitamins and nutrients such as vitamin a, vitamin c, and vitamin k among others. Parsley is especially easy to grow indoors since it requires little sunlight. Parsley grows slower than other herbs but as long as the soil stays hydrated it will continue to produce fresh herbs for long periods of time.
Sage is another herb that has a wide variety of uses and applications. Along with food, many beauty and skin product include sage on their ingredients list. This herb has antioxidant and antiseptic properties that fight early aging. Fresh sage is a healthy addition to many food such as fruits, meat, and vegetables while at the same time it can also be made into a sage butter or mixed into a stuffing for added flavor. The only drawback can be that this plant can be finicky to grow as it must be in full sunlight, watered every other day, and properly trimmed for good health.
Tips for Growing Herbs Indoors
- Herbs need between four to six hours per day of sun at the minimum. Make sure you are not placing your herbs in an area that gets very little or even no light throughout the day.
- Choose small leaves over large leaves. Even though these seem like they will have the most flavor they are the leaves that produce energy and food for the plant. When pruning cut a mix of both old and new leaves from your herbs for proper growth.
- Drain properly to prevent any damage or rotting in the root area. Sitting in a puddle of water will only let mold take hold more easily, destroying your plant’s roots.
- Keep your plant healthy and happy by spraying it with a 1 to 8 part soap and water mixture to get rid of any bugs trying to turn your herbs into food or a home.
Organic Authority- Growing Herbs Indoor This Winter
Health- 10 Healthy Herbs to Grow( and Eat) at Home
For more information about herbs and cooking from this author, check out:
Surprisingly Healthy Common Spices
10 Easy Ways to Hack Your Kitchen
8 Natural Diuretics to Add to Your Diet