We grow a lot of herbs in pots here at Our Little Chateau but I think the one that gets the most attention is the Thyme plant. I admit it is very interesting to see a small/medium size bush growing in a pot inside a chateau. On trimming days it is even cut into cut little shapes. On Christmas you will find it cut into a Christmas tree shape. I think thyme is fun aromatic plant that is very versatile and grows fairly quietly and easily. Here are our best tips and trick on how you too can growing thyme in pots in your little chateau.
Plant Or Seed?
I know I am a big advocate for growing your edible plants from seed but when it comes to thyme it is sometimes better to get a plant from the store. Thyme can be very hard to get established and can take 14 to 28 days or longer depending on conditions in your chateau to sprout from seed. More so over it is not guarantee to live indoors in such a fragile state. Getting and already established plant with strong roots and a woodie stalk even if it is on the smaller side make pot growing indoors easier.
What kind of soil to use is always a debate when it comes to potting Thyme. I have hard of people growing Thyme in sandy loom, mixed soil with sand, small rocks and soil, and just plain old potting mix. So which one is right? The big secret is all of them. Thyme can really grow in any type of soil and I have grown in it in many different types of soil. The key is you have to let the soil dry before you water it again. Thyme likes to dry it before it gets watered again, and the soil type doesn’t matter.
Thyme is an amazingly easy plant to care for as it doesn’t need to be water very often and can also let you know when it needs to be water by drooping it’s leaves. For this reason it makes a very nice gift or addition to a collection for a person who is prone to killing plants. It is hard to kill a Thyme plant and here is why. Thyme is dessert type plant and loves dry warm conditions. This means if you forget to water your Thyme it will actually be happy. Another wonderful feature of Thyme is that it will let you know when it needs to be water by drooping over at the tips of the plant. It may be a little stressful for the plant to get that dry but as soon as you water it you will see its stems start to perk back up and it will be just fine. As long as you don’t forget to at least look at it from time to time your Thyme plant should be just fine.
Full sun is the way to go with thyme as it loves warm and sunny Mediterranean climates. If you don’t have a sunny window you can place it in full time that is ok too but note that the plant will get leggy and this can make it look sparsely. If you can try to set it out for some sun on days when its warm and clouds aren’t covering the sun, and then bring it back inside at night when it gets cold.
One problem we have noticed with growing Thyme indoors is that it can mold very easily. Some things you can do to make sure this doesn’t happen is make sure the plant is not touching a window or a wall and that it has room to grow. It is helpful to keep it in a spot that has good airflow and an area you walk past often to get its stems moving serval times a day. If all this is not possible I recommend rotating the plant so that one side in not touching the window or wall for to long. Shaking the plant or rustling the stems is also a good fix. Not only does it keep the plant from molding but it also smells really nice as well. You don’t have to shake or rustle violently a small little rustle with your fingers will do.
This one is very easy I generally repot our Thyme plant when I can see the roots growing out of the holes on the bottom of the pot. I use the same soil to repot as a do when transplanting it as to not stress the plant. There are other methods like waiting until spring or in early to mid summer. However if you leave the plant for to long needing to be repotted it will start to grow roots from its steams in an effort to find more room if you notice this happening repot the plant as soon as possible or it will start to die from being root bound.
The only fertilizer I have ever use on our Thyme plants is organic seaweed based fertilizer and I don’t follow the directions on the package because it’s so strong of a dose and generally kills the plants. I use a very diluted ratio that depends on the type of plant I am watering. There are a lot of different types of plant foods you can try abs using the one that works best for you and your environments best. I use organic plant food because we use the Thyme in cooking and don’t want to eat chemicals. If you aren’t using it for cooking then that leaves you open to a larger verity of plant fertilizers make sure to be careful if you have pets, small children, or if the plant is outdoors.