Herb Garden Ideas
You Can Use Right Now

Herb gardens have been planted for centuries. As you read the herb garden ideas here, think of what elements you like best and would fit into your unique herb garden design.

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Ideas on using herbs in the garden

You can tuck herbs into your larger garden design. Many herbs attract beneficial insects and/or repel pests!

Raised bed herb garden in Dallas, TX (US)

Or you can have a separate herb garden.

You can make your herb garden design complicated or simple, manicured or natural, formal or informal.

You can

  • create a container herb garden,
  • build a raised bed herb garden,
  • use a herb garden starter kit,
  • or even have some or all of your herbs in a window herb garden (although that's outside the scope of this website).

What will you include in your herb garden?

Mixed border of herbs and flowers. Dallas, TX (US)

Your herb garden can include:

  • culinary herbs and spices,
  • herbs chosen just for their fragrance or flowers,
  • a garden of medicinal herbs,
  • herbs for potpourri,
  • a dye garden,
  • herbs for your religious ceremonies,
  • herbs which attract butterflies and other beneficial insects,

or some of each.

Give your herb garden one or more focal points -- an urn, a garden bench, a favorite statue, a showy group of plants such as globe alliums -- to draw the eye and give your garden more interest.

Things like benches, fountains, and birdbaths can be functional as well as beautiful.

Ideas for using woody herbs

Rosemary border atop a stone wall. Huntington Library, San Marino, CA (US)

Woody herbs like rosemary, lavender, and bay are useful in creating hedges, topiary, or bonsai.

You can use these to make a parterre -- a formal design where plants are separated by small dividers.

Or you can use these woody herbs as ground cover, borders, showcase plants (perhaps a rosemary bonsai on a stand in a sheltered spot in your garden), or as a hedge around the entire herb garden, to set it off from the rest of the yard.

Herb garden ideas for small gardens

For those of you with limited space or invasive plants such as mint:

  • Place potted herbs into a decorative raised bed (or into a dug-out below-ground area) then
  • surround the pots with a light mulch such as wood chips, straw, or coir to make a potted herb garden.

Pots with annual herbs, plants doing poorly, or ones that won't overwinter outside in your area can be switched out fairly easily, keeping the area looking good all year round.

Consider combining herbs with dwarf or espalier fruit trees and/or ornamental vegetables (this is known as a potager) if space for your garden is an issue.

And don't forget up! Going vertically can save a lot of space.

Theme herb gardens

There are so many possible theme ideas for herb gardens!

  • by color (an all purple garden, a red, white and blue garden)
  • style (French Provincial, American Old West, beach decor, Mediterranean)
  • herbs for a particular use (a garden with the herbs to make curry, or a cut flower garden)
  • by plant (such as a pepper garden, an allium garden, or a lavender patch)
  • a historical garden (American Colonial, Italian Renaissance, or a medieval monastery garden)

We go into garden themes, colors, and styles in great depth in my Tasteful Yard Design course.

I hope that these herb garden ideas have been helpful to you. You can find lots more herb garden ideas over on Houzz.com.

Would you like to talk more about herb gardens with a friendly group of people who love edible landscaping as much as you do? Join the Tasteful Landscape community.

What would you like to read next? Here are some related pages:

Front yard ideas - Backyard ideas - Flower garden ideas

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