Level Up Your Windowsill With This Homemade Herb Planter

Food52 - Thu Jun 23 14:32

We’ve teamed up with the audio innovators at Sonos to dream up your next afternoon project: an easy-as-can-be herb planter. Head outdoors and take the Sonos Roam with you—this portable, waterproof speaker will be your sidekick as you DIY, plant, and prune your way through the summer.


When you’re looking to add a little home-grown flavor to your cooking, herbs are the easiest way to spice things up. This summer, bring the outdoors inside with an easy-to-make planter box that will freshen up your space (and your meals). Planter boxes are ideal for folks who don’t have room for an expansive garden because they allow you to grow a lot of herbs in just a little space. In fact, even though I have several raised beds in my own garden, I always grow herbs just outside my kitchen window for ease of picking while I cook.

For this DIY project, I’m turning a simple wire basket into a customizable planter and I’m making sure I’ve got the perfect soundtrack throughout the process (thanks to my portable, outdoor-friendly Sonos Roam, the perfect herb-to-table companion). Think: fragrant Mediterranean herbs suspended from your kitchen ceiling, edible flowers waving to you from the windowsill when it’s time for happy hour sips—this is small space, personalized planting at its finest because if you have a spot to hang it, you’ve got a place to grow a garden. So cue up your favorite playlist and get ready to make a simple yet stylish herb box that can be customized to move to the beat of your own gardening goals.

Photo by MJ KROEGER. PROP STYLIST: MEGAN HEDGPETH. FOOD STYLIST: KATE BUCKENS.

When selecting a basket for your creation, look for one that is at least 5 to 8 inches deep (this will allow room for roots to grow) and make sure to choose food-safe or stainless steel baskets to avoid toxic coatings leaching into your soil. Herbs are the perfect garden plant, whether you’re an experienced grower or a total newbie to planting. They’re quick-growing, easy to care for, and have the most versatility of any homegrown produce. If you’re looking for a fool-proof place to start, pick up a few basil, thyme, and oregano plants because they’ll be able to bounce back from any learning curves and reward you in abundance. If you’re hanging your planter under cabinets or attaching multiple baskets, you can shorten the chains for each side and adjust as needed as long as all four chains are equal in length.

For Base Planter Basket

  • Wire basket
  • Coconut fiber roll
  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Pliers (optional)
  • Potting soil
  • Compost (optional)
  • Herb plants

For Hanging Customizations

  • 56 inches of metal chain with adjustable clip and hook (or swap in leather cord or rope), to be cut into 14 inches per side
  • Leather tools (optional): leather punch, rivet setter, ¼-inch rivets
  • Ceiling hook

For Mounting Customizations

  • Fence/railing mounting brackets (wall hook plant hanging brackets will also work)
  • Zip ties

These steps will get you well on your way to making your herb basket, but how you customize it is up to you. Time to turn up the volume and ask the Sonos Roam to play your favorite DIY-tackling tune; voice control will keep your hands free for creative projects like this.

Base Planter Basket

  • Push coconut fabric into your basket and cut to fit, leaving at least 2 to 4 inches of extra material for folding into place.
  • Make a 90° cut at each of the four corners to assist with folding.
  • Fold fabric inside towards the center of the basket and tuck into corners, pushing down to completely line the inside of the basket. Remove excess fabric using scissors as needed.
  • Coconut fiber is very forgiving, so if you mismeasure or need to fill gaps, simply cut an extra piece and insert it where needed.
  • Fill bottom of basket with a 2-inch layer of potting soil, place herb plants on top of potting soil, fill the remainder of the basket with soil, and top with a layer of compost (about a handful or two of soil will do).

Hanging Herb Basket

Customize your grow basket with chain, leather, or rope finishes to complement the style of your kitchen and adjust the chain length to hang wherever makes most sense for your space (like from the ceiling or under cabinets). One basket not enough? Try creating a two-tier basket with a shorter chain between the two wire storage units to grow a double decker of culinary delights.

Railing Herb Basket

Turn this planter into an outdoor centerpiece by adding mounting brackets to the back side of your growing basket, then hang it from a patio railing, fence line, or windowsill.

Living Herb Wall

Take the patio railing basket one step further and bring the party indoors by hanging several of them from a decorative wall ladder.

Mobile Herb Cart

Need a garden on the go? Turn a wire basket cart into a mobile herb station that can transition from inside cooking to outside grilling with ease.

Photo by MJ KROEGER. PROP STYLIST: MEGAN HEDGPETH. FOOD STYLIST: KATE BUCKENS.

If you’re looking for herbaceous inspiration before hitting the local nursery for plants, these thematic planting combos will set you up for the most delicious summer spread just within arm’s reach. Bonus: We’ve even got some recipes to get you going come harvest time.

Salad Herbs

Chives, dill, peppercrese, parsley, chervil, and tarragon comprise the salad herb category. Snip a few leaves and show off your garden goods with this herby chickpeas and feta salad.

Basil Bouquet

It’s a basil bonanza with Italian large leaf basil, African blue basil, purple basil, and lemon basil. Get out that cocktail shaker and celebrate growth with this basil gimlet.

Grilling Spices

Summer savory, marjoram, thyme, and rosemary are your herby grilling companions. Fire up the BBQ and put this grilled vegetable vinaigrette on your favorite farmer’s market finds.

Edible Flowers

Borage, pansies, nasturtium, marigolds, and calendula are a few of my favorite snackable florals. Pluck a few petals and spruce up a colorful grilled pineapple cheese plate.

Hydration Is Key

While all these herbs are fantastic companions, keeping watering needs in mind when planting will set you up for success. Soft stem herbs like cilantro, parsley, and basil will need more consistent moisture than the hard stem herbs like thyme, oregano, and rosemary, who like to dry out completely before the next watering. Try planting like-minded plants in clusters to keep them happy come watering day.

These baskets are perfect to hang in the shower or over an outdoor railing for a good soak without making a mess. Bring along your Sonos Roam and turn chores into a dance party. This speaker is waterproof, durable, and weather-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about only drenching your plants. Hydration schedules will vary in internal and external temperatures, so make sure to check in a couple times a week by sticking a finger into the soil—if the top inch seems dry to the touch, it’s time to give your plant pals a drink. So, are you ready to get growing?


What herby dishes are you dreaming up for summer? Tell us in the comments!

Our friends at Sonos help listeners feel more with their immersive, easy-to-use speakers. From the Ray, a sleek new soundbar designed for the ultimate home movie viewing experience, to the Roam, a totally portable, outdoor-friendly option made for music on the go—Sonos has a sound solution for every occasion. To transform your listening experience and find the right speaker for your space, check out the full Sonos lineup here.