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Growing Herbs Indoors

Q. I would like to grow herbs indoors this year using some of the plants from my outdoor garden. Any helpful tips would be appreciated.

A. Dig the plants you want to save this month and cut back leggy foliage and flower heads. Repot the small plants in a soilless mix and place the herbs in a southern window. They will need at least five hours of direct sun per day. Tiered glass shelves work very well if your window can accommodate them. Fluorescent lighting also gives good results if the pots are placed 5 to 12 inches from the tubes and the lights are kept on for 12 to 16 hours per day. A good balance of lights would be one cool-white bulb and one warm-white bulb. Special "grow lights" are unnecessary. Herbs do best in relatively cool rooms (60-65 degrees Fahrenheit) with adequate humidity. Because nutrients are depleted rapidly from the soil when herbs are grown in pots, fertilize every two to three weeks during active growth, and every four to six weeks with a diluted solution during the winter months.