Herbs and Container Vegetable Gardening



Photo credits: MGs Jessica Klein DiStefano (veggie barrel); Linda Shepherd (spearmint and sage with golden oregano)

Herbs and Container Vegetable Gardening

Fresh herbs can be hard to find in stores and are often extremely expensive. Growing your own can give your cooking extra zip and depth of flavor. Learn about herbs such as anise hyssop, arugula, basil, bay laurel, catnip, chervil, chives, cilantro, dill, fennel, lavender, lemon verbena, lovage, marjoram, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, savory, sorrel, stevia, sweet cicely, tarragon, and thyme. Edible flowers such as borage, chamomile, chives, nasturtium, and calendula petals add beauty to any salad.

Container gardening is ideal for those with limited space or poor soil conditions. Most vegetables can be grown in containers, but some do better than others or require particular structures or special strategies. This class will suggest vegetables and varieties that are best suited for growing in containers, as well as the preferred types of containers, growing media, location, and watering strategies to use. Many herbs can be container-grown!

Below are resources to enhance your learning.

  • Home Vegetable Gardening in Washington   WSU Extension Publication EM057E, a free download PDF, describes site-specific growing conditions, tools and equipment, vegetable planting, irrigation, soil management, integrated pest management, harvesting, vegetable storage and preservation. See p. 17 for container gardening.
  • Herbs  — Puget Sound Gardening Tip Sheet #8, a free 2-page download PDF, provides notes about the most popular herbs.
  • Herb Gardening —  University of Illinois Extension online publication that provides a directory of common herbs, which then links to their description, culture, harvesting, use, and lists popular varieties. Other linked webpages provide information on harvesting, drying and storing herbs as well as recipes. 
  • Container Gardening Puget Sound Gardening Tip Sheet #6, a free 2-page download PDF publication, discusses soil and fertilizer, plant selection, and watering.
  • Successful Container Gardens: How to Select, Plant, and Maintain — University of Illinois Extension online publication that links to their webpages on choosing a container, selecting soil mixes, watering, fertilizing, Making Herb and Vegetable Containers and more.

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