Self-Sufficiency Sundays: Grow Herbs From Seed!

From Little Herb Gardens by Georgeanne Brennen and Mimi Luebbermann:

The almost-instant gratification received from growing arugula, cilantro, or dill is reason enough to plant them. Each sprouts and grows quickly. Arugula leaves pop through the soil in three or four days. Success appears before your eyes. Cilantro emerges shortly thereafter, in five or six days, while feathery dill tips come through the soil in about ten days. Any of the three can be put to use within a few weeks, to flavor salads, soups, and sauces and to sprinkle on pizzas and sandwiches. Grow any or all of these herbs in small, window-sized pots, and replant with fresh seeds after a couple of months. A steady supply of succulent, tender leaves is your reward. Spring and fall produce especially good harvests. All three herbs quickly send up central stalks, flower, and go to seed during summer, and in winter germination is slower. Arugula is also called rocket, garden rocket, and roquette. Cilantro is also known as Chinese parsley and coriander.

How To Do It
What You Need
1 packet seed
Container at least 4 inches deep and 8 inches in diameter
Gravel, small rocks, or bits of broken pottery
Potting mix
Liquid fertilizer

Growing Conditions
At least a half-day of direct sun

When to Buy
Arugula and cilantro seeds: year-round from mail-order catalogs
Dill seeds: spring and summer from garden centers or nurseries as well as mail-order catalogs

When to Plant
Year-round, but spring and fall are most favorable

When to Harvest
Pick young leaves in approximately 25 to 35 days

Make sure your container has a drainage hole in the bottom. Cover the hole with a little gravel, a few small rocks, or bits of broken pottery.

Fill the container with potting mix to within 1/2 inch of the rim. Soak the potting mix with water until it is thoroughly moist. Scoop out approximately 1/2 cup of the moist mix and set aside. Space seeds about 1/2 inch apart and press them into the mix gently with the palm of your hand.

Sprinkle the seeds with the reserved mix, providing a 1/4-inch soil cover. Pat the potting mix covering down.

Keep the potting mix moist and fertilize every two weeks with a liquid fertilizer.

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