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Container herb gardening in Texas

Christine asks:


A few days ago, I bought an assortment of herbs (Italian parsley, peppermint, basil, thyme, rosemary, dill, and cilantro) from my local farmer's market. At home, I potted and watered them, and set them on my south-facing balcony. The last few days they've been looking wilted (some more than others). I'm not sure it's the heat, too small pots, or delicacy of some of the herbs that is causing this. I also need to know when to water them. Help, please!


Often direct sun on small pots (Especially dark colored pots) can overheat plants causing them to reach wilting point even before the soil dries out. The more tender herbs; basil, parsley, mint, dill and cilantro will most likely be most affected, the thyme and rosemary are much hardier plants. One option would be to pant all the tender herbs in a larger planter together giving their roots more area to spread and establish so they can with stand the hot summer Texas sun. Avoid allowing the pots to dry out between watering, you can check the moisture level by simply sticking your finger in to the soil about an inch or so, if the soil feels dry and your finger comes out rather clean its time to water. Sounds like the herbs are in small pots and being in Texas I am guessing you could water everyday.

The other problem could be drainage, most plants do not like wet feet, pots should always have drainage.

Hope this helps. Happy gardening!

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