Who doesn’t like saving money? The problem is, not all money-saving ideas are “glamorous,” so to speak. If you’re not into taking a sack lunch out to dinner with friends or shopping exclusively from second-hand stores, consider this money saving idea – grow your own spices at home.
It might sound like a small step, but consider that a single bottle of dried spices can cost up to $4 or $5. For much less money you can have fresh herbs accessible at any time! Plus, the greenery will add a nice fresh touch to your interior design.
Check out these spices that can be easily grown indoors to save a little cash.
Mint is a solid choice because you can use this fresh herb for so many purposes! Mint can be used in savory dishes, desserts and makes a great garnish for cocktails at home.
Mint will grow almost anywhere but it thrives with at least a bit of sunlight daily.
If you’re unfamiliar with chives, they can be chopped and added to a number of savory dishes to add a boost of freshness. Chives shouldn’t be cooked into anything, but they will taste delicious as a last-minute addition to your home-cooked meals.
Chives grow quickly and in almost any condition, but it’s best to plant a developed chive plant instead of seeds. When you cut chives to use in your meals, it will stimulate new growth, so a single chive plant will likely be enough for you.
Basil is more difficult to grow indoors, especially in the colder months, but it’s well worth it if you can pull it off. Fresh basil goes perfectly in almost any Italian dish and makes cocktails extra-special.
Want to get really elaborate with basil? Try incorporating it into a home-cooked Thai dish.
Lemongrass is a specialized herb that you might not be familiar with. Lemongrass is used frequently in Asian cuisine and is also often used as an herbal remedy. If you can’t find lemongrass plants or seeds at your local nursery, try an Asian grocery store!
Lemongrass can be grown easily indoors but requires quite a bit of water. Indoor lemongrass should be watered until the water exits the drainage holes on the bottom of the pot. From there, the soil should be kept moist but not drenched.
Many consider parsley to be a comprehensive spice – most dishes are easily complemented by the fresh taste. And luckily for you, parsley is super easy to grow indoors.
Parsley doesn’t require full light and mature plants don’t mind the cooler temperatures. The trickiest part of growing parsley indoors is actually sprouting the seeds. Parsley seeds germinate in just over a month’s time and grow very slowly afterward. You would benefit greatly from purchasing a full-grown parsley plant if you’re growing spices to save money.
Rosemary is another herb that has applications in food as well as herbal healing. Rosemary is used primarily in hearty, American-style dishes like steaks, roasted potatoes and stews.
Rosemary is not the easiest herb to grow indoors, but once you know the tricks, the payoff is worth it. When growing spices indoors, you have to be conscious of the amount of light the plant is getting. Rosemary will grow best in an area with full sun.
You should make sure the plant has adequate drainage, a pot with a depth matching the height of the plant above ground, and a coarse potting soil to allow for drainage. Rosemary can easily be over-watered so only water it when the soil is completely dry (about once every two weeks) and don’t allow water to stagnate.