best herbs to grow indoors with artificial light

18 Best Herbs for Indoor Garden Enthusiasts

Follow this list of the best herbs for indoor garden to grow and harvest your own herbs whether you live in a climate with a cold winter or are a beginner gardener just getting started!

Having fresh herbs on hand is one of the greatest benefits of being a gardener! It provides variety and flair to our cooking and allows us to experience the most vibrant flavors! And growing indoor herbs is a great way to try your hand at gardening if you are a beginner or extend your growing season into the winter months as a veteran gardener!

In this post we’ll go over 18 of the best herbs for indoor gardening as well as give you a few tips to experience success with your indoor herbs! 

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How to grow herbs indoors?

Growing herbs indoors is easy as 1-2-3! With a bit of prep and some key decisions, you’ll be harvesting your own herbs in no time! 

  1. Choose your location: Opt for a south-facing window or sunny windowsill that gets full sun (at least 6-8 hours of sunlight daily). Make sure the location allows for good air circulation.  
  2. Select your grow lights: Pick from a fluorescent or LED grow light – fluorescents are budget-friendly, while LED lights are energy-efficient and adjustable. Consider using shop lights for cost-effective LED options. 
  3. Choose the right herbs: Both perennial and annual herb plants can thrive indoors with the right conditions. Because these herbs are often near the kitchen sink and in a small space, plants that are typically large (like mullein) don’t work for growing indoors. You can source seeds or starts from garden centers or stores. 
  4. Select containers: Get creative with different pot sizes and shapes. You can grow herbs in separate pots or plant several herb plants together in a single container. Ensure containers have drainage holes to prevent root rot. Additionally, consider planting herbs with like nutrient and water requirements together. 
  5. Plant your herbs: Start from seeds or buy grown starts (you can even get herbs and propagate from the grocery store. Use quality potting soil with good drainage. Keep soil moist for seed germination.

Best Herbs for Indoor Garden

So what are the best herbs for your indoor garden? Well there are a few requirements that I wanted each herb to meet in order to add it to the list! Those requirements included:

  • Herb has a low growing habit or can be pruned to maintain a small size
  • Herb can handle multiple harvests
  • Can be grown in multiple ways (including in a hydroponic garden system for ease of maintenance)

With this in mind, I found that many plants in the mint family as well as mediterranean herbs topped the list! So, in no particular order, here are 18 of the best herbs for indoor gardening.  

Basil

Basil is an easy to grow annual herb that can thrive in the indoor garden! There are tons of varieties of basil from lemon and cinnamon basil to thai and holy basil there is sure to be a variety you enjoy! Basil plants thrive in well-draining soil and love the sunlight! Pinching off the flowers as they appear encourages leaf production and prolongs the plant’s life.

Also Read: How to Grow Basil Indoors: A Super Simple Guide 

Lavender

Lavender is a popular herb that is used in cooking, making essential oils and for its fragrance. This perennial herb can be grown indoors with proper care and maintenance. Lavender plants prefer well-draining soil and bright light (at least 6 hours of sunlight per day). Allow soil to dry out between watering and mist leaves regularly.

Rosemary

Rosemary is a hardy perennial herb that is a great addition to your indoor herb garden! It is one of many mediterranean herbs on this list and thrives in warm, sunny conditions. Choosing the right container perhaps with other mediterranean herbs that prefer consistent but not overly wet conditions can help this herb thrive! 

Also Read: Growing Rosemary Indoors: Benefits, Growing Instructions and Tips for Keeping a Rosemary Plant Alive

Oregano

Oregano, a beloved herb with robust flavor and aromatic foliage, enhances various dishes with its depth and complexity. Thriving in well-draining soil and full sun, this hardy perennial herb is drought-tolerant and prefers slightly dry conditions. Proper pruning and watering ensure healthy, bushy growth for this versatile culinary favorite.

Thyme

Thyme is a hardy herb that thrives in sunny, well-drained soil. It’s drought-tolerant and prefers dry conditions. Prune for bushy growth. Enjoy thyme’s culinary and medicinal uses, its subtle flavor, and ornamental beauty in your indoor kitchen garden!

Sage

Sage is a versatile herb with a host of medicinal properties! It is a hardy perennial herb that can be propagated by cuttings, so snipping a few springs from the garden before frost can be an easy way to bring this herb indoors to use during cold and flu season. Prune regularly to prevent a leggy appearance. 

Mint

Mint is a fast-growing herb that gets a bad rap in the garden! But indoors, this quick spreader can be tamed and enjoyed all winter long!  

Mint is a hardy perennial herb that is easy to grow from seed or transplants. It thrives in well-draining soil and partial to full sun, although it can tolerate some shade. Water mint regularly to keep the soil evenly moist, and pinch back the stems to promote bushy growth.

Chives

Chives are an incredibly easy to grow perennial herb that just continue giving! They propagate by division under the soil, so your single chive plant can turn into multiple quite quickly! They thrive in well-drained soil and prefer full sun (a window with southern exposure works great).

Lemon Balm

Lemon balm is a fragrant herb known for its citrusy aroma and calming properties. It’s relatively easy to grow indoors, preferring well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight. Aim for at least six hours of sunlight daily, either from a south-facing window or using grow lights. Lemon balm enjoys slightly acidic soil, so a pH between 6.0 and 7.5 is ideal. Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged, and prune regularly to encourage bushy growth.

Dill

Dill is one of many annual herbs on this list! It’s easy to grow from seed and is a great beginner friendly plant to grow!  The feathery leaves are a great texture addition to any dish and it’s the perfect herb for pickling! Dill prefers full sun, but can tolerate some shade. Water requirements are moderate but be careful not to use too much water.

Cilantro

Cilantro, also known as coriander, is a cool loving herb with delicate leaves and pungent aroma that is a favorite for the early spring garden! Growing this herb indoors is a great way to enjoy its fresh flavor all year long. Cilantro has a relatively short growing season and can bolt (go to seed) quickly even indoors, so it’s best to place in an individual pot in a cooler area of the house.¬†Consider growing a slow bolt variety like the Long-Standing Santo Cilantro from Botanical Interests.

Marjoram

Marjoram is a delicate herb with a sweet, slightly floral flavor reminiscent of oregano. When growing indoors, it prefers well-draining soil with a neutral pH around 6.5 to 7.5. Place it in a spot with plenty of sunlight, ideally a south-facing window. Marjoram doesn’t like soggy roots, so water it when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. It’s a relatively low-maintenance herb but benefits from occasional pruning to keep it bushy and promote new growth.

Savory (Winter and Summer)

There are two main types of savory: summer savory and winter savory. Both have a peppery flavor and are great for seasoning savory dishes. They thrive indoors in well-draining soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Provide them with plenty of sunlight, ideally at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. Water them when the top inch of soil feels dry, but be careful not to overwater as savory prefers slightly drier conditions. Prune regularly to encourage bushy growth and prevent legginess.

Parsley

Parsley plants come in two main types: curly and flat-leaf (Italian). They are easy to grow, thriving in well-draining soil and partial to full sun. Regular watering and occasional fertilization help maintain these versatile herbs, perfect for any kitchen.

Tarragon

Tarragon is a versatile herb with a distinct anise-like flavor, commonly used in French cuisine. Indoors, it prefers well-draining soil with a slightly acidic to neutral pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Place it in a sunny location, ideally receiving six to eight hours of sunlight daily. Water it when the top inch of soil feels dry, but avoid waterlogging the roots. Tarragon can be a bit finicky to grow indoors but thrives with consistent care and occasional pruning to maintain its shape.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a tropical herb known for its vibrant orange rhizomes, which are ground into the spice we use in cooking. When growing turmeric indoors, use a rich, well-draining potting mix with plenty of organic matter. It prefers warm temperatures and high humidity, so place it in a warm spot with indirect sunlight. Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged, and mist the leaves regularly to increase humidity. Turmeric can be slow to sprout, so be patient, and provide it with warmth and moisture to encourage growth.

Bay laurel

Bay laurel, or bay leaf, is a slow-growing shrub with aromatic leaves used in cooking. It thrives in well-draining soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Plant in a sunny spot for 6-8 hours of sunlight daily. Bay laurel is drought-tolerant but needs watering when the top inch of soil is dry. Regular pruning maintains its shape for harvesting leaves.

Ginger

Ginger, a tropical herb valued for its spicy rhizomes in cooking and herbal medicine. When growing indoors, use a rich, well-draining mix with organic matter. Plant rhizomes in shallow pots just below the surface with buds facing up. Put in a warm, sunny spot with indirect light. Keep soil moist but not waterlogged, mist leaves for humidity. It takes months to sprout, so be patient, offer warmth and moisture for growth.

best herbs for indoor garden
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