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Many herbs make ideal container plants because they like the well-drained conditions that a container offers. They will look good in pots on the patio, close to your kitchen door. Just make sure when you plant a container with mixed herbs to choose plants with similar requirements of soil, light and water because this way the maintenance will be easier.

Herbs in containers

Planting an ornamental herb pot, that kind with holes all around, also known as strawberry pot, is best to be filled in stages. First cover the drainage holes with crocks before adding free-draining compost to the height of the first planting pockets. Than use small plants, knock them out of their pots and push the rootballs through the holes in the first row of planting pockets. If necessary you can reduce the size of the rootballs.

Add more compost to the height of the second row of planting pockets and plant the next plants. Repeat until the pot is filled. Unless the pot is very large, don’t plant too many herbs into the top of the pot because there will be too much competition between them. Usually a single well-grown plant looks much better in this kind of pot.

You don’t need to plant herbs in special herb pots, you can use any pot, especially large earthenware pots look good as herb pots if you plant them imaginatively. If you have a half-barrel you can also use it as herb pot. Plant a bold shrubby herb, a sweet bay for example, in the centre and a collection of smaller herbs around the edge.

After planting, position the pot in a sunny spot, especially if you have planted it with Mediterranean herbs, as they will be more aromatic and flavorsome when grown in full sun and in poor soil – feeding them will increase growth but the flavor will be less intense.

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