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How to Create an Herb Garden: The Tools and Steps to Get You Started

by Alex Harris

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Have you always wanted to have an herb garden? Well, it takes a few steps and tools to construct the garden and plant your favorite herbs, and you don’t need to have any previous experience either. 

An herb garden is especially handy for those who enjoy cooking dishes that incorporate fresh herbs such as those found in Italian cuisine. In this step-by-step guide, I will show you what tools and materials you’ll need as well as walk you through how to create a hassle-free yet robust herb garden! 


Tools You’ll Need


watering can


You’d be interested to know that this project is not as complicated as most would expect. In fact, I built my very own herb garden with the common hand tools that I use to repair furniture and fittings at home. Here is a list of tools that you will need:


  • Hand Saw: The handsaw is to be used for cutting pieces of wood to secure your garden or make props where needed.
  • Tape Measure: Use a tape measure to determine the dimensions of your garden.
  • Spade: This is the primary digging tool. You will need to dig the soil so that it becomes soft enough to plant your herbs.
  • Garden Fork: The fork loosens the soil by lifting and turning over the soil on your garden.
  • Drill and Screws: You will need to attach the parts of wood using screws. The drill creates holes for driving screws.
  • Trowel: The trowel breaks up the earth and digs small holes for which to plant herbs.
  • Watering Can: You will need to water your herbs regularly. A watering can do the job.
  • Screwdriver Bit Holder: Drivers screw into the holes in wood.




Once you’ve gathered the necessary tools, you will also need the following materials:

  • Pre-cut wooden sleepers
  • Wood preserver to prevent the rotting of the wood
  • Coach screws
  • Soil


Getting Started


Step 1: Determine The Herb Garden’s Location


Mint garden


The ideal location should be an area that receives ample sunshine and rainfall. It should not be under trees or shades as most herbs require at least six hours of sunshine every day. I set my garden away from runoff water lines where the soils drain well. So, keep in mind raise the garden so that water drains well.


Step 2: Determine The Size Of Your Garden


Measure the size of your garden using a tape measure. Ideally, the width of the herb garden should not be more than a meter. This will enable you to work in the garden without having to step on the garden.

My own garden is about six meters by ten meters (6 x 10m). I have created strips of one meter by five meters with pathways between every two strips. I am able to work on the strips from the edges with ease.


Step 3: Cut The Wood To Secure The Garden


Use the tape measure to measure the wood sleepers and the cut the pieces by the use of a handsaw.


Step 4: Drill Holes In The Blocks Of Wood


Use the drills for which to put the screws. Each end of the block should have at least two holes. Before drilling the holes, arrange the wood blocks such that they make a box at right angles.

Mark the areas to drilling the holes. I prefer the holes to be at least an inch an half from each other so that the joint will be firm after the screwing.


Step 5: Screw The Wood Blocks Together


Use the screwdriver bit holder to drive screws into the wood. It is easier if you have a powered drill that also has a screw bit holder. Ensure that the bolts are tightly fastened onto the screws so that your box stays firm.


Step 6: Apply Wood Preserver


The wood preserver prevents rotting and insects boring into the wood. Use a painting brush to paint the inner and the outer sides of the structure that you have constructed. Always wear gloves when cutting and applying the preserver on the wood.

Note: If you are creating an herb garden in a rural area or in an existing garden, you do not need to secure it with wood. You can just raise the garden so that it is well drained and easy to work on. However, ensure that the width is no longer than one meter.


Step 7: Pour Out The Soil Into Your Box Holder


pouring soil to box

Image credit:Pastaemotori.com


I have chosen to plant my garden in a concrete yard. To prevent damaging the concrete surface, I lay a PVC paper before putting the soil. This way water and plant roots do not find their way into the concrete surface. Pour out the soil into the box’ until it is full. Ensure that soil is free of pebbles and stumps that may hinder the development of the root structure of your herbs.

While it is not compulsory, you can improve the quality of the soil by mixing the soil with the compost matter. The compost matter can be bought from an agrovet ( a place where farmers can purchase agricultural and veterinary products) or created using grass cutting after mowing.

Note: If you are working on an existing garden, dig up the soil using the spade. Use the garden fork to break up the soil particles to a fine tilt. Moreover, ensure that the garden is raised and that there is a pathway around your garden.


Step 8: Water Your Garden


The soil will naturally get compacted after watering the garden. I had to add some soil so that it rose above the wood. You can use a hose or the watering can to water the garden prior to planting the herbs.

Planning to create a medium-sized or larger garden? You should also consider water-saving watering methods, like a soaker hose.


Step 9: Dig Holes In Your Garden


planting holes


To do this, use the trowel to dig planting holes. The size of the planting holes should be about two inches in depth and two inches in diameter. The space between one hole and the other depends on the herbs you are planting.

If you have poor quality soil, consider using D.A.P fertilizer when planting. Mix a handful of the fertilizer with the soil in every hole.


Step 10: Plant Your Herbs


Transplant your herbs from the nursery to the garden. Water the nursery before transplanting so that it is easy to uproot the herbs without damaging their roots. When planting your herbs, place the young seedling upright into the hole and steady it by filling the soil on the sides. Water your seedlings after planting. Not sure on what herbs to plant? This glossary of commonly used herbs can be your starting point. 




herbs in pots


Have you found my tutorial enjoyable and easy to follow? These tips are designed for those who have enough space outside to grow a garden, but don’t be discouraged if you live in an apartment; container gardening can be just as efficient!

This simple list of instructions has enabled me to enjoy plenty of quality and delicious dishes made with fresh herbs. Try it out and see the change it brings to your dining table. if you find it useful, be sure to share the article with friends and fellow gardening enthusiasts, they’ll surely appreciate it!

Planning to start your very own organic herb garden but not sure how to start? Why not sign yourself up for an organic culinary vacation? Not only will you be shown how to grow your own organic food, you’ll also learn how to use them as ingredients for countless delicious healthy meals! 

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