One of the best advantages of a container herb garden over a herb plot is the closeness you can have them to your kitchen. No need to abandon style either. There are some nice planters and boxes around to draw your creative side out and beautify your dwellings.
I like to chop and change my surroundings a lot so I tend to relocate my planters, but only those containing non-fussy herbs that don`t mind being moved.
You can`t do that easily with plots now can you?
Another plus for container gardening is that you can place the pots undercover when the weather turns really cold or when you want to protect young plants from critters.
Plastic planters are easy on the budget and are light in weight. They come in all sizes, shapes and colours to suit the needs of each herb. If you have only a small balcony or area, square and rectangular containers will fit nicely into corners saving on the little space you have.
However there are drawbacks to using plastic. Quite quickly, in a matter of a year or so, the sun will bleach out the colour and break down the plastic turning your once cheap and cheerful pots into drab and shappy receptacles.
Cosmetics are not the only problem. During hot weather plastic can heat up and cause roots to cook before the crop is ready to harvest for the pot. There`s a way around it though! An old herb hint is to line your container with newspaper several layers thick before you add your potting media. This will keep the heat at bay.
With gardeners there is a great love for real old clay terracotta pots. Using them in the garden or patio creates a natural rustic scene that simply enhances the menagerie of herbs with their multiple shades of greens, greys and purples.
But beware, although most herbs don`t like to sit in water you don`t want them to suffer from drought either. Clay pots have a tendency to draw water from the compost. So water liberally now and then, not a little too often.
Glazed and Gabion
What a delight is a container herb garden that has interesting and unusual designer pots and planters. Glazed and gabion planters are favourites of mine.
They lend colour and texture to herb gardens that may lack in bright blossoms. A glazed clay pot will not dry out the soil as the unglazed terracotta type so high marks for this container.
The gabion planters are hard to come across. You can make your own as I did. It is quite simple to do with galvanized mesh, cutters, pliers and stones or gravel.
Self-watering planters are very handy for the summer when you are on vacation. Just make sure the plant`s root system is established and reaching the reservoir at the base. As soon as you return though get back to normal watering and don`t refill the reservoir. Remember! Our herbs hate wet feet.
Wooden tiered planters blend in so well with the natural characteristics of a garden turning a balcony or patio into a much denser green space.
Wood can be stained to show up the grain, or painted in subtle colours to compliment herb types.
Have fun using wooden planters of all types like wooden crates and boxes or even model trains with 2 or 3 trailers that serve as the planters.
Herbs such as mint, sage, and thyme love to wander. Mint roots will travel under a whole lawn if you are not careful. Can you imagine sorting that one out!!! Containing them in planters will put your mind at rest and save you a lot of digging up.
Yes an attractive container herb garden is easy to create and maintain, is suitable for the patio, balcony or windowsill, and is mobile. Plants will thrive for many years using this method but often they will loose vigour. If this happens then simple divide and re-pot or renew the plant itself.
Hint of Herbs is where you will get to know me a whole lot better as I busy about in my daily life. Read short snippets of herb garden related topics. Little interesting things that don`t normally find their way onto my pages.
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