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Rosemary, basil, parsley, mint: all useful for summer cooking. Buying herbs can get expensive, so wouldn’t it be easier to just grow them yourself? It can be difficult if you don’t have a green thumb, but with these tips you’ll be sure to succeed.

Use An Egg Carton: Planting your seeds in a paper egg carton is a good way to ensure that your seeds can germinate and get everything they need to thrive as a plant. Punch holes in the bottom, put in the soil and seeds, and leave the carton in a place that will allow lots of light. When you see sprouts, you can just bury the carton in the ground along with the sprouts (leaving them above ground, of course). You can also transfer the herbs into pots to keep by your window. The paper will biodegrade and your plants will continue to grow in your garden!

Know What Herbs to Grow: Bringing a plant to life and keeping it alive can be hard if you don’t know what you’re doing. Some plants are tougher than others. You also don’t want to choose herbs that grow very wide or tall if you’re keeping them inside. Some good ones to start with are basil, mint, and parsley.

Use Organic Fertilizer: Fertilizer is a good way to ensure that your plants are growing up healthy and strong. It can also exceed the lifespan of your plants if you’re forgetful about watering them (like I am). For a plant that you’re later going to eat, however, you don’t want to introduce any chemicals to them that you wouldn’t want in your body later. Use compost or store-bought organic fertilizer with your herbs!

Choose the Right Time to Harvest: The best time to pick the leaves off of your plant is right before its flowers bloom. This gives them maximum flavor, whether you choose to use them fresh or dried. If you want to dry them, you can do so by hanging them upside down in a dry place or putting them in the oven at 150 degrees for three hours.

Happy gardening!

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