I love to use fresh herbs in various meals. Dried are always a great option in a pinch, but I prefer to walk outside and just pick what I need. Herbs from your garden, when cared for, will continue to grow even once they are picked… lowering costs and preventing that “oh crap I need basil” moment when making dinner!
Although I now live in a home with a large yard and plenty of room to grow herbs and vegetables, I am still aware of small space living… plus these planters make a nice table decoration!
This is a really quick in-an-evening project. We had the pot already so all we needed was the plants and the soil. Keep in mind, if you want this for the table, use a plastic pot or some other light weight material. Once you add in the soil, the pot is rather heavy and this one would be too heavy for a table top.
I picked Purple Basil, Oregano, German Thyme, and Dill. I wanted two tall herbs (Basil and Dill) and two bushy/trailing herbs. I also wanted to have some color so I picked the Purple Basil… plus I already have some traditional Basil in the main garden. You can use Parsley, Sage, Chives, Cilantro, and other similar herbs. I would be careful in using mints as they tend to take over quickly. Also Rosemary will become big and woody, so it is not ideal for this project.
I split up the plants and placed the Oregano and Thyme around the outside of the pot since they will trail/bush. The Basil and Dill is in the middle as they will grow up and out. Fill your pot to the top with soil (your choice, but a herb/veggie blend is likely best if you have it) and then pour water in to sink the soil. Once the soil becomes wet it compresses, taking your plants with it… to stop this add the water first to compress and then add more soil, then more water. The soil should be wet, but not soupy. Take a stick and stir it if it is soupy to help the water disperse. Then add the herbs, breaking up the roots slightly so when you plant them their roots are already fanning out a bit. Then you are done! The plants will have water already in the soil since you pre-watered the soil. Make sure to water frequently in dry climates until the plants are established (probably a week or two) and then water as needed (when the plants start to look droopy they are in need of water!).
To care for Basil, pick the flowers from the center to keep it growing. Pick the leaves as needed. All the rest just chop bits off as needed to meals.