Nothing jazzes up a meal quite like fresh herbs. I often long for cilantro, basil, oregano, and parsley to enhance a meal and add healthy, satisfying flavor. Without a green thumb, I’ve struggled to keep even succulents alive (I even managed to kill a cactus that was sold to me as “you literally don’t have to do anything to it!”) So, I leave the gardening up to my partner. But, he doesn’t want to trek out to the planter boxes or the garden year-round. It’s just not super realistic to plant herbs we use daily out, away from the house. Plus, the winter weather and frost makes it harder to keep herbs alive outside – even with modest coverings.
Thankfully, growing herbs indoors is easy! With past ventures to keep indoor plants, we’ve had to scramble to find enough little pots and small containers. But, with this herb garden, you simply need mason jars! If you’re anything like us, you’ve got loads on hand from the past decade of canning. It’s 2020 – despite the craziness, this year has been so far, it’s time to embrace the convenience, aesthetic, and ease of mason jar gardening.
Regardless of if you’ve canned in the past, Mason jars are easily and readily available. Additionally, they’re inexpensive and have a timeless, almost rustic style. But the best part? They make for a no-fuss, mess-free herb garden. Simply follow the steps below to get started!
- Quart Mason jars
- Small rocks or gravel
- Potting mix
- Seeds (or herb plants – ready to transplant!)
- Supplies to make labels!
Fill Jars with Rocks
The small rocks or gravel are key to drainage. Since jars don’t have a system for drainage, laying ~ 2 inches of rocks, gravel, or even marbles will ensure the roots are protected from excess water damage.
Add Potting Mix
It’s important to use potting mix – not potting soil. Potting mix allows for excellent moisture retention and works best for container (i.e., jar) gardening. Fill jars with potting mix to 1-2 inches below the jar rim.
If transplanting, carefully dig up the herb plant(s) (being mindful of the roots). Gently shake off excess dirt and place into the potting mix in the Mason jar. Gently cover the roots with potting mix and ensure the transplant is firmly situated. Water immediately after re-planting.
If planting from seed, follow directions on seed packet. In most cases, you can simply sow seeds directly on top of the potting mix and cover with around an inch of potting mix – lightly water.
If you want your kitchen windowsill to be beautifully lined with your Mason jar herb garden, having cute labels are key. Of course, their main purpose is so you can easily identify the herb in question (I’ve definitely thought “oh, I’ll remember” and I NEVER do – don’t be me!).
- A popsicle stick with hand lettering placed directly into the potting mix.
- A piece of paper with a written label taped or glued around the jar.
- An ID card around the neck of the jar with cute lettering and maybe a ribbon.
- A sticker with the herb’s name.
Having a cute jar garden can actually really spruce up a space, so make sure they’re fun to look at!
Keep your Mason jars in a location that gets at least 6 hours of sunlight (like a windowsill). Thankfully, they can be easily moved – so you can move them to a sunny location for part of the day and they can be housed more “permanently” elsewhere, the rest of the time.
Make sure to water your herbs, but be mindful not to overwater. Harvest when ready and add to your favorite kitchen dishes as you go!