You Can Plant Those Living Herbs from the Grocery Store—Here's How

Supermarket living herbs usually only live for a week or two, and after that they have to be thrown out. But you can give basil (and other herbs) a second life by dividing them and regrowing them in your garden!

When transplanted this way, you can make several new plants (for free!) and keep them growing for months after you buy the initial plant at the store.

This method works for all living herbs too, including rosemary, sage, thyme, and mint.

Supermarket herbs should be transplanted soon after purchase.


It should be moved into a larger pot or into the ground the week it’s brought home.


Supermarket herbs won’t do well if you just take them out of the pot and put them straight in the ground (or into a larger container). You need to divide them first.

Supermarket herbs are planted intensively.


To keep your plants healthy, gently prod the root ball apart with your hands or cut them with a clean pair of shears.

Supermarket herbs should be divided before transplanting.


Remove any tiny seedlings by snipping them off at the base of the stems. But don’t throw them out—use them in a salad as microgreens!

Thin the divisions as needed.


Bury the stems of basil seedlings and water well.

Keep the basil well-watered (but not water-logged) to reduce the effects of transplant shock.

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