Propagating Thyme Plants: Thyme Seed Planting And Rooting
There are many reasons why one might want to propagate thyme plants. Some may wish to save them for future use or they may simply like the idea of having something new to add into their garden. For others it’s just because they enjoy the smell of fresh herbs and want to keep them around so that they don’t have to go out looking for them all the time.
The main reason why someone would want to propagate thyme plants is that they’re easy to start. They take up very little space and there’s no need for any special tools. You could even plant your own thyme if you wanted to!
But what do you actually need?
What Kind Of Herbs Are Good To Start With?
Herb seeds are not recommended for propagation since they’ll probably die before germination. Instead, try starting with dried herb such as thyme stems or leaves. If you’re going to use dried herbs, make sure that they haven’t been exposed to too much moisture; otherwise they won’t sprout well.
You can also start with fresh herbs such as basil, parsley, mint or tarragon. These will usually produce seedlings within a few weeks after being transplanted into soil.
Your final option is to use fresh herbs that haven’t been dried yet. This is probably the riskiest way of starting new plants, but if done right then they can be just as good.
What’s The Best Soil To Use?
Use regular potting soil when starting new herbs. Most herbs will grow well in this type of soil, and since you’re not doing anything fancy then it’s perfectly suitable for your needs.
One thing you might want to do is get a small bag of perlite or vermiculite. These are soil amendments that help with drainage and help with water retention as well. Just add a little bit into your potting soil and it should be good.
How Should You Transplant?
It’s important to use small containers when transplanting new herbs. These pots can be anything that has drainage holes in them. Some examples include small plastic pots (like the ones that herbs come in from the nursery), glass jars, or even aluminum foil bowls (as long as they have drainage holes in them).
Fill up your container with soil and make a little dip in the soil. Place your herbs here and add more soil on top of it. (Do not bury the herb; only cover the roots).
Place your container somewhere with plenty of natural light and keep the soil moist (but not soggy) until you start to see new growth sprouting out of your herbs. Once this happens, your herbs should be ready to be transplanted into the garden or into larger pots.
What Should You Use To Transplant?
You can use a spoon, your hands, or anything else that can dig into the soil. It’s all a matter of personal preference; what you might find easy to work with might not be as easy for someone else.
When transplanting your herbs, make sure that you dig up enough soil around the roots so that it’s easy to separate the plant from the soil.
How Can You Water Your New Transplants?
Make sure that your transplants are placed somewhere where they can be easily watered. If you’re going to use a sprinkler can, make sure that the soil is dry before you water (since these cans have a tendency to overspray and your herbs could get wetter than you want).
If you’re going to be hand watering, use a watering can with a thin stream so that the plants don’t get soaked. If you do this enough times, the soil will be moist enough for the plants to grow.
What Should You Transplant Your Herbs To?
Once your herbs start growing, you’ve got a couple different options. You can leave the herbs in their small pots and just place them in the garden. This is good if you don’t want to transplant them, because you’re already used to how much space they take up.
Another option is to transplant your herbs into something bigger. If you decide to do this, you might want to use some old milk containers, old tree pots, or anything else that has good drainage and can hold a plant (that has outgrown its current container).
Once your herbs are in the ground or in a new pot, then it’s time for you to sit back and relax. Your herbs should thrive from here on out.
However, there is one more thing that you should do in order to help your herbs thrive and that’s mulching.
What Is Mulching?
Mulching is the process of putting a top layer on the soil that will help with water retention and will also prevent weeds from growing. Your best bet is to use some type of straw or hay. It doesn’t cost very much and it works really well.
Straw or hay can be found at most garden centers or farm supply stores. If you have some left over from a bale of hay, you can also use that. Just break it up into smaller pieces and place it around your plants.
You don’t need to cover the whole area, just a 2-3 inch layer is sufficient.
Your mulch will break down over time and you may need to add more as the months go on. Don’t worry though, this is an easy process and it’s not very expensive at all.
That about sums up everything you need to know in order to start growing your own herbs from seeds. If you have any comments or suggestions, feel free to let me know about them on the Contact page. Thanks for visiting!
Sources & references used in this article:
In vitro propagation from young and mature explants of thyme (Thymus vulgaris and T. longicaulis) resulting in genetically stable shoots by EA Ozudogru, E Kaya, E Kirdok… – … Biology-Plant, 2011 – Springer
Effect of irrigation frequency and planting density on herbage biomass and oil production of thyme (Thymus vulgaris) and hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis) by HR Khazaie, F Nadjafi, M Bannayan – Industrial Crops and Products, 2008 – Elsevier
Cultural techniques to optimize the thyme (Thymus vulgaris) propagation by S Nicola, E Fontana, J Hoeberechts – XXVI International Horticultural …, 2002 – actahort.org
Thyme by E Stahl-Biskup, RP Venskutonis – Handbook of herbs and spices, 2012 – Elsevier