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how to grow thyme in containers

How to Grow Thyme

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Thyme is a slow growing aromatic perennial shrub that produces a pleasant pungent flavor. There are many different varieties with varying scents, qualities, and uses, with English thyme being the one most commonly used in cooking because of its great flavor profile.


Planting Thyme


Thyme is a slow grower when started from seed, and has poor germination rates. That’s why we recommend that you grow thyme from cuttings or a small starter plant from a nursery. Plant cuttings or starter plants in small to medium sized pots, at least 23 cm (8″) apart.

To eliminate the guesswork in selecting the right size containers for your plants, we’ve put together a list of commonly grown herbs, veggies, fruit and flowers along with the minimum pot sizes required by each.

Starting a container garden? Grab my free guide on choosing the best sized pots for each veggie, fruit, and herb in your container garden – Veggie Garden Potting Guide

If starting from cuttings, start indoors 6-10 weeks before the last spring frost. Seedlings can be transplanted or moved outside once the risk of frost has passed.


Watering Thyme


Water sparingly, as thyme does not like wet soil. Water when the top 1″ of soil is dry to the touch.


Where Can I Grow It?


Grow thyme indoors or outdoors in a nice sunny spot. Thyme will survive the winter outdoors, down to zone 4.


Thyme Growing Tips


Trim plants back after flowering to encourage new, bushy growth.

Harvest individual leaves or clip off whole stems when needed. Thyme can be used fresh, dried, or even frozen for later use.


Companion Planting


Thyme brings many beneficial effects to the garden, and are especially helpful when planted together with anything in the Brassicas family (such as broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage), eggplants, potatoes, strawberries, and tomatoes. This is because thyme is a strong aromatic herb that helps to repel pests, and is also attractive to predatory hoverflies.

Hoverflies prey on many types of garden plants, so having them in your garden is beneficial to many plants. Specifically, the presence of thyme in your garden helps to repel aphids, cabbage worms, and white flies.

Hi - I'm Brie! I’m a plant enthusiast here to help you keep your plants alive and thriving with beginner-friendly plant care advice and tutorials.

I’ve been growing all sorts of plants for years in my tiny apartment, both indoors and on small balconies & outdoor spaces. Let’s create your jungle!

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