Indoor Herb Garden for the Shoebox Apartment

I’ve never had a “green thumb.” More like a “brown thumb.” The HB has always been sweet and has come home from the store with presents of fresh cut flowers. I absolutely love flowers!!

This last time, he came home with a plant. He stood there holding a potted prime rose, looking at me so sweetly. Really, I think he thinks he can save money by buying a flower that grows,…but really, he’s sadly mistaking. I loved the little prime rose. I cared for it and watered it and IT DIED…. I was super upset, but honestly, not surprised…. It’s been cut flowers since…

Meanwhile, a couple Christmases ago, my brother made me flower boxes for my house. They were awesome, but before the winter was over, I moved into an apartment, selling my house, never being able to hang the boxes…

A couple of months ago, the HB and I moved into a new apartment, with a fire escape and 3 kitchen windows. This is very exciting! We decided we wanted to make an herb garden.

Herb Garden? With no yard? Absolutely!

We decided to put pots on the fire escape and make use of the awesome boxes my brother made me in the past.

Herbs tend to be a little less fickle then flowers, so my “brown thumb” shouldn’t completely kill them. Also the HB is a fantastic cook, so having fresh basil and thyme is never a bad thing.

We started the garden a little late, so we bought small plants verse starting from seeds. A little pricier but that’s what procrastination costs…

– Italian Basil (Margherita Pizza Basil)
– Lemon Basil (GREAT for Ices Tea)
– African Violet Basil (the centers are a pretty blue)
– Thyme
– Silver Thyme
– CATNIP ( for the HB to tease Karma the cat with)
– Peppermint (Again,…Great for Iced Tea)
– Chocolate Mint (Ice cream anyone??)
– Dill (Very fickle plant, but he’s so pretty)

Basil and Catnip are pretty strong plants, so we stuck those in pots, outside on our fire escape.


Karma loves to eat plants, so I don’t want her to have full access to catnip…

…lazy cat…

Anyways – So we planted all of the basil together in one large pot. If they begin to grow and mix, I don’t mind.

The catnip got its own huge pot outside.

I already own two aloe plants, and my sweet neighbors left a big aloe plant on our door step for Earth day, so we combined all of the aloe into one flower box.


I originally left the aloe in the pot that sat on the fire escape, but after 2 days he turned brown and was very sad. I switched him to an inside the apartment window, out of the sunlight and he perked right back up! Happy as a clam.

I planted the mint together in their own flower box as well. Mint tends to grown quick and take over, so I figured I would let them battle it out with their own kind.

Dill got her own pot. And yes, she deserves to be a “she.” Whenever she is a little thirsty, I find her fainted all over the pot, but give her a little liquid courage and she stands up strong! Me? No!…I’m not just like that….

All of our plants now have nice homes. We hung the window boxes inside our kitchen. One, we live in a brownstone so we don’t really have a choice, but two – we can control the temperature and climate much better. We also planted them into moveable boxes inside the flower box, so if one plant is getting too much sun, we can swap them around, easily.

So, even if you live in the city in a tight apartment, you can have a little green space all of your own….And no one can judge you if they die, because it’s inside…