Caprese salads. Fresh-muddled mint in your mojito. Rosemary roasted potatoes. The joys of the season don’t have to end when summer does. Instead, these herbs can all overwinter indoors. And it’s easier than you’d think. Jennifer Hihn, the owner of River Plant Co. in Rocky River, offers tips for keeping your herb garden thriving throughout the winter.
Rosemary is a more sensitive herb that likes to stay a bit on the dry side. When maintaining your rosemary plant indoors, opt for a window that faces south. Otherwise, a grow light might be needed.
The good news is that you can have even more basil as it’s one of the easiest plants to propagate — a fun end-of-summer project for kids. Simply snip off a basil stem and place it in a glass of water. It’ll grow roots in a couple of weeks and can then be planted in soil. “Put it in a nice, sunny spot and keep it watered,” Hihn says. “Basil likes to be kept slightly damp.”
This herb is relatively low maintenance yet adds a refreshing smell to one’s garden — or sunroom. Mint can adapt to any soil, but grows and develops best in moist, well-drained soil with compost mixed in.
Be sure to bring your herbs in before the first frost of the fall.
Herbs that are planted in the ground can be dug up and replanted in a pot.
Place your plant in a south-, east- or west-facing window. North is a no-go.
Give your herbs a good once-over with organic Neem Oil before bringing plants in. “Neem’s the best one at knocking out bugs,” Hihn says.
Don’t fertilize. This is your herb’s dormant period. It’s like someone making you eat a burger at 3 a.m.
Water wisely. If your home is humid, for example, it will require less water. Gauge how dry the soil is about a half-inch below the surface and water accordingly.
Rotate plants occasionally to prevent them from bending toward the light.