Rooting herbs from the grocery store?

kterlep(5/6)February 23, 2009

Hi,

I was at Trader Joe's today & on a whim bought a pack each of Rosemary, Mint, Thyme, and Sage, thinking that I might be able to root them at home and save starting them from seed (since I'm out of seeds for them and didn't have any luck with Rosemary last time) and save money not buying seedlings come spring.

I was wondering if anyone has had success doing this, and if so, if there are any other herbs that are good to grow from the grocery store.

I have in my dirt now probably 30 thyme twigs, 8 mint sprigs, 6 sage, and 8 rosemary. If this works, I should have enough of those herbs for my garden plus some to give away.

Also, does anyone know if sage and rosemary will overwinter where I am? I've just moved to Southeastern Indiana near Dayton, OH.

Thanks!

Kate

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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Sage and most rosemary might root, but doesn't do well over winters. Good luck! Thyme, once started from seeds will survive winters quite well and you can harvest any time. Keep in mind that many store herbs are sometimes forced grown and my not take root very well. Rooting hormones may be needed.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 10:12PM
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takadi(7)

Yea I just bought a pack of basil a few weeks ago and transplanted it to a pot, and alot of them have died in the process, and they are still continuing to look a little droopy. We'll just have to wait and see

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 10:30PM
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kterlep(5/6)

I didn't try basil...I have a bunch of basil seeds of different flavors to use...cinnamon, lemon, thai...

Good luck!

I did use hormone to try. The mint already had what looked like tiny air roots in the cleft of one set of leaves....

Well I don't feel like I wasted anything, 'cause I have all the immature pieces, and the leaves I pulled off the more mature pieces to make bare stems for rooting.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 10:42PM
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maifleur01

I have had luck with thyme rooting but are still confused with rosemary. One place states to use old wood cuttings another states to use green wood. Good luck on rooting your new friends.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 10:56PM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

I've started mint from a cutting and that should fare well for you.

You may wish to take a browse through old posts since rooting herb slips have been covered quite a number of times and you may find some other helpful information. Go to the top page for the herbs forum and scroll to the bottom. The search bar for the forum is there.

FataMorgana

    Bookmark   February 24, 2009 at 8:10AM
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tricia73(8)

I think mints are probably the easiest things to root from cuttings. They grow fast and are generally pretty hardy as long as the soil doesn't dry out. I've never tried rooting anything from the grocery store like that but a friend gave me some mint sprigs last year and they grew like wildfire.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 6:28PM
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takadi(7)

I got a question about cuttings thought, particularly basil. What type of lighting and environment should you leave it in to stimulate root growth? I've been leaving my cuttings in a south facing window sill with really bright sun for about two weeks, but hardly any root growth is occurring

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 7:17PM
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davidgardner

takadi,
Your cuttings shouldn't be getting lots of direct sunlight. It is important to limit heat and transpiration and thus stress on the cutting until roots have begun to develop and the plant can take up its own water. Low light and high humidity are ideal for the first couple weeks.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 12:06AM
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takadi(7)

ahh, so much makes sense now. Thanks

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 12:28PM
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discocarp(z9b FL)

Rosemary should start easily from cuttings. I regularly cut a tip off a plant, stick it in the dirt, and watch it grow with little to no care. I would also suspect mint and thyme would take easily.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 1:09PM
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islanda(8?)

I have done this with sage, oregano, thyme, and rosemary from the grocery store. Most work pretty well, even tho they live in my fridge for a few days while I use them up in cooking.

Odd thing is, if I stick them in a supermarket herb pot, they ALWAYS take. In fact, some spat out tomato seeds are doing better in the basil pot (an experiment) that the expensive F1 seeds I bought. Any idea what they put in those pots?

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 5:35AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Organic fertilizers and micro nutrients. PHC is one great powdered fertilizer for use with seedlings. The soil in the pots is usually a sterile seed starting medium, and is not really dirt. Many make the mistake of trying to start seeds in pots using plain garden soil. Most outdoor gardens do have diseases and bugs (like fungus gnats/maggots) that will thrive even better indoors, something you dont want in inside pots.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2009 at 4:25PM
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etzool(3)

Mint is -very- easy to root; I have several cuttings doing well from a grocery store plastic box (read: four freaking bushes of it). I've also managed sage... however, after doing that and then starting from seed, the difference is night and day.

Either I managed to somehow stunt my sage transplants or they're just not that great, but the sage I grew from seed (Burpee, nothing special) is far, far hardier and more potent, and grows incredibly quickly.

If you're having trouble starting seeds, I'd suggest reading up from many sources; I combined the most popularly touted methods and ended up pretty much doing everything very simply, and haven't had trouble getting anything except tomatoes to grow (but that was a very poorly-done experiment, and I'll be getting it right next time).

    Bookmark   March 9, 2009 at 10:17PM
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