To begin, choose an appropriate spot in your lawn for the herb garden. You will need an area that gets plenty of sun exposure throughout the day – four hours is the minimum requirement. Another important consideration is the need for good quality soil, and proper drainage, so look for an area that provides this. If the soil is not particularly fertile, and drainage is a problem, you can always consider investing in a raised garden bed.
Next, choose which herbs you wish to plant in your garden. Usual options include basil, dill, tarragon, bay, chives, thyme, rosemary, parsley, mint, sage, and coriander, but you can go for more unusual choices like saffron, or any other herb that you might require. Once you have decided, make sure you visit your local nursery or gardening center, to see if all the herbs you want are available.
Once all this has been decided, it is time to decide the size of your herb garden. Keep in mind that a 4 by 6 foot plot of land for a garden will hold around 20 plants, as each plant occupies roughly 1 square foot. Therefore, make sure you chalk out enough space for all the herbs you want to grow in your garden, keeping in mind their width and the amount of space they are likely to take up.
After you have purchased the herbs, and decided how much land you will be using, make a sketch as a final plan of the garden. In this, you will need to specify exactly where you plan to place each plant, and how the entire garden will be arranged. Make sure you keep the smaller plants in front, so they are not swallowed up by the larger ones, and get enough sunlight. You will also need to give space to plants that grow more horizontally, like bushes, and less to those that grow vertically.
Now, till the ground to prepare it for the planting. While tillers make the job a lot easier, you can simply till the earth with a hoe and shovel, especially if the area designated for the garden is small. Remove and discard any weeds, rocks, and grass, and add in organic material like peat moss and fertilizer, to improve the quality of the soil.
Then, arrange all the herbs in the garden while still keeping them all in their pots, as per the sketch you made earlier. Make sure you space them appropriately, and once this is done, step back to see if you like the effect. Make some adjustments if you want, and then start planting them in their specific locations. Pick up one pot, take the plant out (make sure you keep the root system intact), dig a hole in the designated spot, fill it with a bit of water, and then place the herb inside this. Fill the hole up with more soil and water.
Repeat with all the other plants, working with one at a time, until they have all been planted. Now, step back, and give it all a final sprinkling of water. Your small herb garden is now ready.