A wide variety of dishes can be refined with kitchen herbs. That is why they should not be missing in any garden or on any windowsill. They can be used both fresh and dried. All herbs mentioned can be cultivated both indoors in pots and outdoors. They can be sown and partially propagated by cuttings or root suckers. In most cases, however, it is much easier and more sensible to buy strong plants in stores and plant them in the garden. Below we would like to introduce you to popular kitchen herbs and give you tips for growing them on balconies and windowsills.

Popular kitchen herbs and spice plants


Both flat and curly parsley exist , with curly parsley being the most commonly used. Flat-leaf parsley is said to have a slightly more aromatic taste. Planted alongside onions, tomatoes and radishes, parsley can repel insect pests.


You can sow parsley in spring and again in July about ½ cm deep in humus-rich soil. It takes about 2 weeks to germinate. Since it grows very slowly, a generous cultivation is recommended. Parsley should always be sown in a different location, as it is incompatible with itself.

Site requirements, care and fertilization

  • Very bright location, but no direct sun.
  • The soil should be rich in nutrients and humus and moist.
  • Loosen up the soil around the parsley every now and then!
  • Water regularly, parsley loves moist soil.
  • Waterlogging should be avoided.
  • Therefore ensure good water drainage.
  • Before watering again, let the top layer of soil dry out.
  • – Give some fertilizer in the spring.
  • For fertilization, compost can already be incorporated during soil preparation.
  • Early fertilization is also advisable for potted plants.

pruning and overwintering

Parsley can be cut or harvested from April to October, sometimes even into November. When cutting, the inner, heart leaves should remain so that the herb can grow back again and again. Parsley should only be harvested in portions so that the plant has enough time to grow back.

Perennial parsley is relatively hardy. Despite everything, you should protect them from severe frost with brushwood, straw or a tarpaulin. You can also dig them up, put them in a pot and continue cultivating them on the windowsill. In the house, it prefers a bright and cool location during the winter months and watering regularly but sparingly.


Basil is one of the heat-loving classics among kitchen herbs. In our latitudes, it usually grows as an annual herb and must therefore be sown or planted every year. As an underplanting for tomatoes, cucumbers and various cabbage plants, basil can counteract mildew and whitefly infestation.


Basil can be grown indoors from March. To do this, the seeds are placed in special seed soil and lightly pressed. The seeds should not be covered with soil, since basil belongs to the light germs. The culture vessel should then be placed in a bright and warm place and kept moist.

After the ice saints (after May 15), you can plant plants with at least two pairs of developed leaves in the garden or cultivate them in pots on the windowsill. Before planting in the garden, the soil should be loosened and enriched with compost. Then plant at intervals of between 20-25 cm.

Site requirements, care and fertilization

Outdoors, basil needs a wind-protected and sunny location.

  • The location should change every year if possible.
  • Keep basil slightly moist after planting
  • The same applies to basil in the pot.
  • Avoid waterlogging in any case
  • When watering, avoid watering the leaves as this could cause stains.
  • fertilize once a week, but only moderately
  • Only use organic fertilizer or a special herbal fertilizer.

pruning and overwintering

If only the shoot tips are cut, the plant will sprout more vigorously and develop a lot of foliage. The more often you cut basil, the stronger and bushier it grows. However, it should have reached a certain minimum height before the first cut.

Overwintering outdoors is not possible, since basil has to be sown or planted fresh every year anyway. In the pot on the windowsill you can harvest this herb fresh all year round.


Like basil, rosemary is a kitchen herb that needs a lot of warmth and grows as a bushy, branched, evergreen subshrub. Rosemary proves to be a good neighbor to carrots and cabbages as it helps repel insect pests and the cabbage white butterfly.


Rosemary can be grown indoors from mid-March. The seeds are placed in a seed pot about 1 cm deep in seed soil and lightly covered with soil. The germination time is around 21-35 days. After the ice saints, the plants can then be planted outdoors.

When propagating by cuttings, cuttings about 10 cm long are cut from the mother plant in March/April and planted until they root. That takes about four weeks. After that they can be transplanted. The cuttings also root in the water glass.

Site requirements, care and fertilization

  • Rosemary prefers warm, fully sunny and sheltered locations.
  • It thrives very well on stony, well-drained, humus-rich as well as sandy and somewhat calcareous soils.
  • A drainage layer of gravel or expanded clay is recommended.
  • A layer of gravel placed around the plant can serve as a water reservoir.
  • Water sparingly, if necessary a little more in summer.
  • Better to water a little less than too much.
  • Apply a basic fertilizer of horn shavings or mature compost in the spring.
  • Then fertilize about twice a month.

pruning and overwintering

Rosemary is relatively tolerant of pruning. When cutting, you should not cut into the old wood. This Mediterranean culinary herb can be harvested fresh from spring to autumn.
Rosemary that is not hardy should be dug up and overwintered at 5-10 degrees. There are now several hardy varieties that can overwinter in a sheltered spot in the garden. Nevertheless, you should cover it in winter and water it from time to time.


Most types of thyme have a bushy, highly branched habit. This Mediterranean herb grows very sprawling and tends to become bare in the middle. Just like rosemary and basil, thyme can also be kept on the windowsill all year round.


Thyme is sown from March to May under glass if possible. The seeds are only lightly covered with soil. Later, the seedlings are transplanted into pots and planted outdoors after May 15, at intervals of about 25 cm. After planting, water well. The soil must not dry out until the thyme has grown properly. The plant can be propagated by cuttings. Since one plant is usually sufficient, it makes more sense to buy it and plant it in the garden.

Site requirements, care and fertilization

  • Thyme should be sunny, dry and sheltered from the wind.
  • Poor, loose soil with a pH of 7-8 is preferred.
  • Once the thyme has grown well, water only if it is dry.
  • Excessive amounts of fertilizer should also be avoided.
  • Mixing in some lime and compost once a year is quite sufficient.

pruning and overwintering

In order for thyme to grow compact and dense, it should be cut back regularly. The first cut should already be made on the young plant. The shoots are shortened evenly all around. This can be done in early spring or immediately after flowering. Regular harvesting of the shoot tips or entire shoots also serves to rejuvenate the plant and ultimately contributes to care.

Thyme is partially hardy. The small leaves stay green all year round, so they can be freshly harvested all year round. Too much moisture in winter is more dangerous for this herb than the cold. To protect against severe frosts, however, the plants should be lightly mounded up in locations particularly at risk of frost or covered with straw or brushwood.


There are also different types of sage . Most are perennial and herbaceous and also do not make any special demands on their care. In a neighborhood with fennel, cabbage or carrots, sage can provide some protection against cabbage whites.


From March you can grow sage indoors or sow it outdoors from April/May. Place the seeds a maximum of 5 mm deep in moist soil, cover them with soil and press them down. After regular watering, the seeds will germinate within 7 to 21 days and can be planted out in the garden at 35 cm intervals.

Sage can be propagated from cuttings. To do this, shoots that are about 6 cm long and not flowering are cut off in autumn and the lower leaves are removed. Then you put them in a peat-sand mixture (1:1) in a cold frame, with hibernation temperatures of about 10 degrees. They can then go to their final place in the spring.

Site requirements, care and fertilization

  • Sage prefers a full sun.
  • The soil should ideally be loose or rocky, poor in nutrients and moderately moist.
  • It can be calcareous or neutral but never acidic or freshly fertilized.
  • water only if it is dry for a long time
  • Waterlogging is sage’s greatest enemy and should therefore be avoided.
  • fertilize only rarely or not at all

pruning and overwintering

Regular pruning is recommended for sage. The plant is cut back to approx. 10 cm when it begins to sprout in early spring. You should not cut down to the old wood. The pruning should be completed by August so that the plants can mature before winter. If the right time has been missed, the pruning should be postponed until early spring.

Sage is a very robust kitchen herb and hardy to -15 degrees. In milder locations, it can overwinter outdoors. Additional winter protection from leaves or twigs is still recommended.


Oregano is also known by the name Dost. It grows as a perennial, is easy to care for and can reach a height of one meter. As with most herbs, there are also different varieties of the vigorous oregano.


From April you can pre-cultivate oregano indoors in seed soil at temperatures between 16 and 20 degrees. However, from mid-May it can be sown directly outdoors. Oregano is a light germinator, which means that the seeds must not be covered with soil.
In addition to sowing, oregano can also be propagated by division or by root suckers or cuttings. Since oregano spreads via rhizome-like runners, it can easily become a nuisance under certain circumstances. It multiplies itself, so to speak.

Site requirements, care and fertilization

  • Oregano loves warm, full sun to sunny locations.
  • Normal, well-drained garden soils are suitable, but also dry soils.
  • Enrich very poor soil with compost
  • For better growth, water regularly for the first few weeks after planting.
  • Waterlogging is not tolerated.
  • Fertilize sparingly after flowering
  • Organic long-term fertilizers or compost are suitable.

pruning and overwintering

April is the best time to prune, especially older plants. To do this, the oregano should be cut off about a hand’s breadth above the ground. After that, the kitchen herb grows back denser and more compact.

The older the oregano is, the more cold-resistant it is, with the variegated varieties reacting a little more sensitively to cold than the green-leaved ones. Oregano survives temperatures between -10 to partially -20 degrees. Despite everything, you should provide it with appropriate winter protection in winter.

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