Since W and I are aiming to cook most of our meals at home, our monthly budget has changed drastically. While we are saving money by eating at home, our total spending at the grocery store has definitely increased. Thankfully we have something helping keep the cost of groceries down and that would be our homegrown herbs.
I do not have a green thumb and I never thought I could keep herbs alive, let alone grow them. My MIL helped start our herbs when we moved into our apartment. We have a covered porch that had two planters filled with dry soil when she came to visit. She and I found a great nursery where we purchased basil, italian parsley, rosemary, oregano, and cilantro. We also bought impatiens to add a little color to each pot and an arrowhead plant to provide shade to the cilantro.
These are pictures of our homegrown herbs at the beginning (forgive the quality of the iPhone!):
Here are the tips passed on to me that some of you may want to know:
1. Spend a day checking the area periodically to know the sun and shade patterns and note what time of day they occur.
2. Plant your herbs together based on those that have similar needs for sun and shade.
3. Place your pots in locations appropriate to the sun and shade requirements for your herbs.
4. Water! Water your plants as often as needed. My MIL suggested sticking your thumb in the soil to see if it is dry or not. When my thumb feels dry soil, I water the plants. Here in the South with this crazy hot summer, I water them every day.
5. Be careful not to over water – plants can drown too! My watering can is the perfect size needed for my pots. My MIL advised this purchase!
I’m absolutely thrilled to say that with the encouragement and knowledge passed on to me, I have not only kept these herbs alive but they have grown immensely. We now look for recipes that include basil, oregano and rosemary as they have really thrived. I don’t know specifically how much we have saved by having the herbs on hand, but I can tell you we have saved! More importantly I have gained confidence that one day I will have a green thumb. I’m already planning on gardening and landscaping our imaginary yards!