5 Herbs for Early Spring Gardens

In the early spring, the weather is fickle. One day is hot and the next could have a light dusting of snow. It is too early for tender herbs to survive the temperature fluctuations, but there are still plenty of herbs that won’t mind a chilly morning or two, and will still grow just fine. The added benefit of starting them all from seed makes this list of herbs frugal as well!

  • 01 of 05


    Growing cilantro
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    We grow quite a bit of cilantro from seed. To be honest, it is allowed to escape and reseeds in a specific area. That way, we get the earliest cilantro AND the latest cilantro that the season offers. This takes the guesswork out of it for us.

    Be sure to start your seeds straight into the ground now. The seeds will tolerate even a light covering of snow, and the minute it is warm enough, they will germinate!

  • 02 of 05

    Lemon Balm

    Lemon balm plant
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    Lemon Balm is part of the hardy mint family. It's no surprise that this yummy herb can tolerate the crazy days of early spring weather. When you plant it, remember that planting it in a container that is sunk into the ground, might be a smart move. Lemon balm will escape and grow everywhere if given the opportunity.

    Plant our seeds now, and enjoy the best this lemony plant has to offer before the heat of summer puts too much stress on it.

  • 03 of 05


    Bourage plant
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    Plant borage seeds right now! This beautiful herb deserves a place of honor in the garden. It will grow quite large, so plant it where you want it to remain forever. Borage will escape and reseed vigorously.

    Borage leaves are used in salads, when they are tiny, of course, the flowers are always edible, and once the sun starts to scorch the earth in the latter part of summer, this cool-loving herb will try to go to seed and die back. Be sure to peek under the large mother plant, for small seedlings to add to your salads all summer long. What a fun addition to the early spring garden!

  • 04 of 05


    Dill plant
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    Who doesn’t love dill? It grows lightning fast in the cool spring soil and offers a bright sunny flavor to your dishes in no time. Dill likes to reseed itself once it has been trimmed back numerous times, so planting now and continuing to plant at weekly intervals, will provide you with plenty of dill. It dries and freezes perfectly, so build up a stash while you can!

    I freeze my dill whole, blossoms, stems and leaves. Then I have just what parts I need for pickling time.

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05


    Basil plant
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    As much as you hear about basil-loving the heat (which is very true), it may surprise you that basil does really well if started as seeds indoors (right about now) and then transplanted outside when the weather permits.

    It also grows extremely well indoors. There is no reason you couldn't start seeds inside and keep them in a sunny window to harvest as they become large enough. It is a great way to keep you from planting anything tender out in the garden. Don't be fooled! Spring is here, but frost dates still remain.