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HomeGardening9 Suggestions for Rising Thyme in Pots or Containers

9 Suggestions for Rising Thyme in Pots or Containers

I couldn’t reside with out thyme. Have you ever tried it with roasted carrots and honey? Unbelievably scrumptious.

Thyme is a Mediterranean herb that enhances so many kinds of delicacies, but it surely’s additionally simply plain fairly. In order for you all the advantages of this scrumptious herb however wrestle with house or tough soil, this text is for you.

Thyme doesn’t want a lot for repairs, so it’s an important possibility for learners. Bees additionally belove the blooms! Fortunately for these in small areas, its shallow roots make it an important candidate for container rising. Want some tips about rising your personal? Let’s get began!

First, Decide the Proper Container

All kinds of thyme keep fairly compact, however they’ll unfold a bit (undoubtedly a superb factor on this case). Relying on the variability, thyme will develop between 3-12 inches tall and 12-15 inches large over time. Maintain these issues in thoughts when selecting a container:


Close-up of Thyme in a large clay pot on a white table covered with a wicker napkin. Thyme is a perennial plant with slender, branching stems covered with small, oval greyish-green leaves.
Thyme has shallow roots and might be grown in a 6-inch deep, 12-inch diameter container.

Thyme is a sluggish grower with shallow roots. You solely want a container 6 inches deep and 12 inches in diameter to develop one good plant. In the event you’d prefer to develop a number of varieties, plant them in a wider pot or raised mattress and house them 12 inches aside. They’ll slowly develop collectively for a beautiful thyme smorgasbord. 


Close-up of inverted terracotta pots. The pots are large, rounded, elongated, expanding towards the top. Each pot has a drainage hole at the bottom.
Thyme prefers well-draining soil and might be grown in containers with drainage holes.

Thyme naturally grows in gritty, rocky soils and wishes good drainage. In case your container doesn’t have drainage holes, you possibly can drill them your self. Terracotta pots are good, letting roots breathe, however any container letting water move by will work properly. Thyme can be glorious in raised beds with oregano, rosemary, lavender, and sage. All of them like the identical free-draining situations, so amend with horticultural sand or perlite if the raised mattress is stuffed with heavy soil.

I’ve been rising my thyme in a raised mattress for a couple of years. In the event you’re on the lookout for a bigger mattress, try Birdies Metallic Raised Backyard Beds. In contrast to wooden beds which might rot over time, these are fabricated from long-lasting galvanized metal.

When you have a smaller house to work with, do this Spherical Brief Metallic Mattress. It seems good, might match a number of crops for a compact herb backyard, and doesn’t want any particular instruments to place collectively.

Plant on the Proper Time

Close-up of a man's hands transplanting a Thyme plant into a large clay pot in a sunny garden against a blurred background. The plant has vertical thin stems covered with small oval leaves of bright green color, arranged oppositely along the stems.
Plant thyme in spring after frost, give it heat earlier than new frost hits.

You possibly can plant thyme begins in your backyard in early spring after the hazard of frost has handed. It’s chilly hardy all the way down to zone 4 but it surely likes to get established within the backyard earlier than publicity to chilly temps.

You possibly can plant all the best way as much as early fall, supplied you give your thyme at the very least a month of heat earlier than a brand new frost hits. Its very best temps vary from 68-86℉. When you have an surprising chilly snap simply after planting, cowl it with frost material or mulch the highest with leaves.

Thyme will keep evergreen in delicate climates. It should go dormant in areas with chilly winters and pop again up in spring. In the event you’d prefer to harvest all of it 12 months, preserve it in a transportable pot and convey it indoors close to a sunny window.

Select the Proper Website

Close-up of a growing Thyme in a pot on a sunny windowsill. Thyme is a herbaceous plant with small thin stems and tiny elongated leaves. The stems become woody at the base and become more flexible towards the tips. The leaves are small, oval, narrow, green. The pot is wrapped in craft paper.
Plant thyme in full solar for 6-8 hours per day for optimum development.

When planting something, it’s clever to maintain its native habitat in thoughts. Thyme originates within the Mediterranean, which has a sizzling and dry local weather. Translating this to your backyard means placing your thyme in full solar for at the very least 6-8 hours per day.

In the event you solely have half shade, thyme will tolerate it however responds with slower development. Go forward and plant it anyway- you’ll possible nonetheless get loads to reap and luxuriate in.

Give it Good Soil

Close-up of young Thyme sprouts in black small pots in the garden. In the foreground is a woman's hand with golden rings on her fingers. Thyme sprouts are small, upright, short, thin stems covered with tiny oval, narrow, linear green leaves.
Thyme is adaptable to varied soil sorts however prefers sandy soil with good drainage.

Thyme isn’t finicky about soil. In reality, many gardeners plant decorative varieties in dry areas between rocks the place it spreads fantastically.

Go for sandy soil over heavy clay, as this aids in drainage. A superb potting combine amended with a layer of compost and a little bit of horticultural sand or gravel will do properly.

Select The Proper Selection

Among the finest components about thyme is its numerous fragrant and taste profiles. Some are earthy, others odor like citrus, and a few are grown for his or her colourful flowers. It is available in two important sorts, decorative and culinary, although all are edible.

Listed below are a couple of completely different varieties I like to recommend making an attempt in your backyard this season:

English Thyme

Close-up of an English Thyme plant in a purple pot against a blurry background. The plant consists of vertical thin pale green stems covered with small oval dark green leaves.
Widespread Thyme is a flavorful selection liked for its sturdy style and engaging flowers, very best for savory dishes.

A yummy, earthy-tasting selection, additionally known as Widespread Thyme. It will get about 12 inches tall and large, with gentle pink to lavender flowers adored by pollinators. It has a strong taste common in cooked dishes, particularly used with meats and roasted veggies. 

German Thyme

Close-up of a German Thyme plant in white plastic pots. It is a small perennial plant with woody stems and small fragrant leaves. The stems are thin, branching, forming a bushy growth. The small, oval leaves are closely spaced along the stems and are green in color.
German Thyme is a flexible and winter-hardy selection, excellent for including delicate taste.

That is the variability I take advantage of most in my backyard. It’s barely much less potent than English thyme, making it extra of a flexible background taste than the star.

This selection can be very winter-hardy, withstanding temps all the way down to -30℉. It has small pink flowers and is nice as a garnish and in salads.

Lemon Thyme

Close-up of a growing Lemon Thyme in a black plastic pot at a garden center. The plant forms thin stems densely covered with small oval green leaves with creamy white edges. A yellow sign that says "Lemon Thyme" in a pot.
Lemon thyme has a pleasant citrusy mint taste and aroma, with chartreuse foliage and pink flowers.

I might inhale this scent for hours! Lemon thyme has a refreshing citrusy mint taste and a dreamy aroma when crushed. It has chartreuse foliage and pink flowers. Whereas nice for cooking and making tea, it’s additionally common as a decorative.

Creeping Thyme

Close-up of a blooming Creeping Thyme in a large black pot, in a sunny garden. It is a low growing perennial plant that forms a dense carpet of stems and leaves. Creeping thyme leaves are small, oval in shape, arranged oppositely along the stems. Creeping thyme produces clusters of small flowers on short stems. The flowers are lavender in color and have a tubular shape with four or five petals.
This kind of thyme contains decorative varieties with stunning flowers.

Creeping Thyme includes a number of decorative varieties (you possibly can eat them too!) that look attractive flowing over the perimeters of pots. Try Purple Creeping Thyme for fairly darkish pink flowers, Wooly Thyme for comfortable, gray-green leaves and pale rose blooms, or Elfin, with a pleasant mounding behavior and lightweight purple flowers.

Seed vs. Nursery-Grown Vegetation

Close-up of Thyme plants in black nursery pots, in the garden, against a blurred background. The plant has vertical thin stems covered with small oval green leaves with a slightly purple underside.
Begin thyme from seed indoors 8 weeks earlier than the final frost, then transplant the seedlings.

Thyme might be grown from seed, however reaching maturity takes 6-12 months. In the event you do need to develop it from seed, begin it indoors at the very least 8 weeks earlier than your final frost.

Sprinkle seeds on the floor (goal for about 3 each 10 inches or so), and barely cowl with soil. Seeds germinate in 12-15 days and might be thinned as soon as they’re an inch tall.

Harden your seedlings off as soon as the hazard of frost has handed, then transplant them into the backyard.

Most gardeners choose to buy a nursery begin, which might later be propagated through cuttings. This fashion, you possibly can harvest it immediately. Put together the soil and plant your bought thyme about 12 inches from different herbs so it has room to unfold.

Water the Proper Quantity

Close-up of a woman spraying a Thyme plant from a green plastic bottle with a white sprayer. Thyme is a perennial plant with woody stems covered with small green oval leaves. The plant grows in a terracotta pot. On the white table is an empty terracotta pot, a spool of string, cut Thyme sprigs, and another Thyme plant.
Thyme is drought tolerant and appropriate for arid climates.

Thyme is drought tolerant as soon as established and an important alternative for arid climates and water-wise gardens. Verify small transplants typically and water them each time the soil is dry.

Mature crops prefer to dry out fully between waterings. When the climate is sizzling, you might have to water it as soon as per week. Within the cooler temperatures of spring and fall, it possible received’t must be watered greater than twice a month.

Whenever you water, give it a radical soak to succeed in the roots. Keep in mind that small pots will dry out extra shortly and have to be checked extra typically as days get hotter.

Overwatering is extra of a hazard than underwatering. Soggy soil results in rotted roots and brown leaves. Keep away from this by doing a soil test. Stick your finger in knuckle-deep. If it’s dry at that depth, give it a drink! In the event you really feel moisture, test once more in a few days.

Fertilize (or Don’t)

Close-up of stems with leaves of a Thyme plant in a clay pot. The plant has thin, woody stems covered with small, oval, green, fragrant leaves.
Thyme thrives in poor soil and doesn’t require fertilization.

Thyme is a rugged plant that doesn’t want fertilization (in reality, it prefers poor situations over wealthy soil). A prime dressing of compost in early spring will give all of it the required vitamins. 

In the event you’d prefer to pamper your thyme, you may give it a liquid seaweed feed as soon as a month in the course of the summer season.

Patrol For Pests

Thyme is mostly unbothered by pests when grown within the backyard. They don’t like its minty odor. Nonetheless, listed here are some critters you may encounter and what to do about them:


Close-up of a swarm of Aphids on a green leaf. Aphid is a soft-bodied insect that feeds on plant sap. Aphid has a pear-shaped green body.
These widespread backyard pests assault new development, inflicting stunted and distorted leaves.

Aphids prefer to colonize tender new development, sucking out sugary sap. This leads to stunted development and distorted leaves. You’ll normally see these small, soft-bodied bugs in spring. They will vary in coloration from inexperienced, grey, or pink.

I don’t like to make use of any kind of pesticides in my edible backyard. I discover that aphids might be defeated with a powerful, direct spray from the hose.

You can too stop pests through companion planting. Parasitic wasps, lacewings, birds, and ladybugs like to munch on aphids. Entice these useful predators by planting thyme close to rosemary and umbel-flowered crops within the carrot household, like dill, fennel, and cilantro.  

Spider Mites

Close-up of Spider Mites on a pale green leaf. The leaf is covered in thin layers of cobwebs on which there are tiny white mites.
Tiny spider mites may cause curled leaves and produce superb white webbing.

Spider mites are so tiny (lower than 1 mm) that you simply’re unlikely to identify them. In the event you see curled or distorted leaves, test for superb white webbing- a key indicator that they’ve made a house in your thyme.

Deal with spider mites the identical as you’ll aphids, with a powerful spray from the hose and a biodiverse backyard that pulls their predators.

Take away badly affected components of the plant. If this doesn’t work, you possibly can deal with your thyme with neem oil within the night, however achieve this solely after you’ve exhausted different efforts. Horticultural oils like neem influence bees and different pollinators.

Harvest Repeatedly

Pruning and collecting Thyme growing in a pot. Close-up of female hands cutting stems with leaves of a Thyme plant using black kitchen scissors, indoors on a white wooden table. The Thyme plant is a herbaceous perennial plant with small thin stems and tiny oval dark green leaves. The plant pot is wrapped in craft paper. The table also has a rope cat, Pestle and Mortar, and other potted herbs.
Common harvesting of thyme eliminates the necessity for pruning.

In the event you harvest your thyme usually, there’s no want for pruning to maintain it in nice form!  Simply snip off a stem proper above a leaf node, leaving at the very least 5 inches of development behind (for shorter crops, take not more than a 3rd of its peak). Decide essentially the most tender new development and keep away from any woody or thick stems.

In case your thyme is a child plant, harvest sparingly till the subsequent season when it might probably rebound extra simply.

The focus of oil and taste is strongest proper earlier than it flowers, however I discover that thyme is tasty all season. After you’ve snipped your stems, strive pulling them by the tines of a fork to separate the leaves for cooking. In addition they look fairly as-is to make use of as a garnish or in salads. 

Maintain chopping a couple of sprigs right here and there, and your thyme will keep bushy and compact. Proper earlier than your final frost, be at liberty to chop the entire plant down by half for a giant harvest that you would be able to dry to make use of all through winter.

Bear in mind all the time to make use of clear, sharp shears and sanitize them between crops to stop the unfold of ailments.

Ultimate Ideas

Thyme is right for container rising. With shallow roots, cold-hardiness, and drought tolerance, it’s low upkeep and simple to maintain completely happy in a small house.

Bear in mind this plant’s most well-liked sizzling, sunny, and freely draining situations for a profitable harvest. Snip and luxuriate in typically (or lean in for somewhat aromatherapy). You’ll quickly search for new methods to include this scrumptious herb into your repertoire!



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