Can you start an herb garden in the fall?
Fall is actually a great time to plant an herb garden. Hardier herbs like rosemary, sage, and thyme can be started this time of year and will grow very well in areas with mild winters. Rosemary can even generally hang on for a couple of frosts.
For those of you entering your cool season of gardening for the fall, you can grow annuals like cilantro and parsley now and have plenty of time to harvest and enjoy their flavor before your cold season hits.
I'll explore my favorite herbs to grow when the weather cools below in case you're wondering what herbs to plant in fall.
How to create a fall herb garden
If you're a beginner gardener, it's always okay to start off small. You can grow an assortment of your favorite herbs in individual pots that you can move inside and outdoors as needed.
I've always had the most success growing herbs in a larger planter. With a little bit more room, the herbs can generally maintain themselves and tolerate more abuse (too much sun, not enough water) than when they're in one small pot.
Read more about my rolling steel herb planter, which is perfect for growing herbs in a small space. It was easy to put together, it's even easier to tend, it has drainage holes since herbs don't like having wet roots, and it can be moved around as needed. You can find instructions for building this planter here.
Planting herbs in fall
Of course, you always have the option of growing more cold-hardy herbs in your raised bed kitchen garden to add a little green during the colder months.
No matter where you're growing your favorite herbs, make sure you plant them in well-draining soil.
Get more tips on how to start an herb garden and source your plants.
Master the art of growing your own organic herb garden and grow enough for a year-round supply
Based on Gardenary's introductory online gardening course, Herb Garden Guide, this comprehensive guidebook will lead you through the step by step so that you know exactly how to grow all the culinary herbs you love right in your very own space.
The Best Herbs to Grow in Fall
Parsley does well in cooler weather
If you've been around these Gardenary parts before, you probably know how much I love parsley. You can choose between flat leaf parsley and curly parsley (or be like me and grow both). Parsley is a low-maintenance herb in the carrot family that will love the cool weather, and because it's a biennial, it can actually last through the winter if your location doesn't get too cold.
Check out my simple steps to grow your own parsley.
Plant dill in your fall herb garden
This cool-loving herb is extremely forgiving of just about all soil conditions. I even like to plant dill in my pollinator garden because swallowtail butterflies love dill flowers. I recommend saving your dill seeds to add on salads and soups in the wintertime when you're missing that garden-fresh flavor.
Cilantro is one of my favorite fall herbs to grow
This herb adds fresh, tangy flavor to so many different dishes, from salsa to pasta salads. If you plant cilantro now, you'll still have time to enjoy the leaves before winter makes your soil unworkable. Bonus: its seeds, also known as coriander, are not only edible, they're delicious.
Cilantro is easy to grow in the fall and only gives you trouble in warmer weather, when it tends to bolt. Check out these useful tips to grow your own cilantro.
Plant chives for loads of fall herb harvests
Chives are a fantastic plant to grow if you want to try your hand at gardening, especially if you haven’t had much success yet. With just a little bit of tending, you’ll be able to grow way more chives than you could ever think of using. It was my early success with chives in a pot that whet my appetite for growing my own fresh food in a simple way. My chives die back in the winter, but gardeners in milder climates can grow them year round.
Garlic is a great herb to plant in the fall
Garlic is in the same family as chives, the Allium family, and while it's not technically an herb, we use it like one in our kitchens to flavor our meals. Plant garlic in the fall and then allow it to do its thing throughout the entire winter. You'll come back to harvest in the spring or summer. It really couldn't be any easier!
Sage is one of the best herbs for autumn
I love how the silvery leaves of sage provide a beautiful contrast to my other plants. Sage is a semi-woody perennial that can hang out in your garden for a long time with proper care. It's super easy to propagate, so take cuttings from your sage plants, pop them into some water, and never have to buy sage from the grocery store again.
Plant lots of thyme in your fall garden
Thyme is an herb in the Lamiaceae plant family, which tends to do well most seasons of the year in the kitchen garden, including far into the cooler months. It grows quickly, and the stems, with their tiny gray-green leaves, look lovely draped over the corner of an herb garden or raised bed. Find out everything you need to know about thyme.
Rosemary grows really well in the fall herb garden
This woody evergreen herb comes from the Mediterranean, and although it loves lots of sun and warmth, it's hardy enough to survive some winter climates. I love both the fragrance and the look of rosemary. Easily turn one rosemary into 100s by following simple steps to propagate your herbs. Keep your rosemary plant happy and healthy with these tips.
Calendula is a beautiful flowering herb to grow in the fall
Calendula is one of the easiest herbs to grow and start from seed. Its gorgeous flowers are edible and have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. I like to make my own calendula tea from dried leaves. Bonus: calendula is the perfect decoy to attract aphids and caterpillars away from your precious fall salad greens.
Learn more about why you should plant calendula in your kitchen garden and how to save your calendula seeds.
Chamomile is one of the best herbs to grow in fall to make winter teas
Chamomile, a member of the Aster family, has cute daisy-like flowers that give any garden a cottage feel. It's low-maintenance and easily self-seeds for the next growing season. I like to harvest a lot of leaves in the fall, dry them, and brew them to make cozy teas for the winter. Learn how to grow your own organic calendula.
Grow your own fall herbs
There are so many things to love about herbs. They're easy to grow, even for beginner gardeners, and they add beauty to your space. They don’t require much room in the garden, they smell great, and they offer a variety of health benefits and flavor when added to your meals.
In addition to my small and large herb planters, I stick different herb plants in the corners and along the edges of my kitchen garden because I don't think you can have enough herbs. In fact, here are more reasons for why you should grow herbs in your raised garden beds.
Even if you don't have your raised beds set up yet, you can still plant an assortment of your favorite fall herbs in pots to put on your patio, your front porch, or a sunny windowsill. Having herbs close at hand makes it even easier to grab a sprig of something delicious the next time you're cooking dinner. You can also harvest as much as possible from perennial herbs like sage, thyme, and rosemary so that you can dry them and enjoy them all winter long.
Here's to growing and harvesting your own delicious, organic herbs right from your own beautiful herb garden this fall.
Thanks for helping me make gardening an ordinary part of life again!