Herb Drying The Easy Way [Herb Garden Series]

Today I want to share a quick tip for drying your herbs. Drying herbs isn’t rocket science; basically you cut some parts off of the plant and set them out or hang them up to dry. It’s easy enough, but sometimes it takes a lot of time for all the water to evaporate out.

You can drastically reduce the time it takes to dry your herbs by pulling all of the leaves off the stems before you dry them. Maybe this is how everyone dries herbs and I’m late to the party again, but this is seriously helpful!

Herb drying the easy way

These two stems would take 2-3 weeks or more to dry if I pinned them up as-is onto the drying rack I made. But instead, I pulled the leaves off the stems and now they will be dry in 3-4 days. I can pull them down off the rack before the next time I need to harvest the plant and hang up new leaves to dry. Which is awesome, because this catnip is seriously prolific; I probably harvest bits of it about once a week!

Just pull off all of the leaves from the stem, pinching the leaf off as close to the stem as possible.

Herb drying the easy way

Then stack the leaves on top of each other, lining up the stems. Put a piece of string under the stems, pull up the ends, and tie a knot!

Herb drying the easy way

It’s a little more work than just cutting off a stem and hanging it up, but it’s worth it! About five minutes of work before hanging the leaves up means that my catnip dries about two weeks faster!

Herb drying the easy way

Just make sure to pull the knot VERY tight, so it cuts into the stems a bit. The stems will shrink when they dry, and you don’t want all of your leaves to fall down onto the floor!

One other way I dry herbs when I’m out of room on the drying rack is in a little strainer. If the rack is full, or if I have tiny piece of plants I want to dry that I can’t clip with the clothespins, I just throw the herbs into a strainer and let it sit on my counter for a few days. This works just as well, and is especially great for flowers.

Herb drying the easy way

Those little chamomile flowers were dry after three days.

The basic idea is to just get rid of any extra pieces of the plant that aren’t completely necessary once it’s dried. Pull leaves off the stem and cut flower heads off right at the base. If you need to leave a little bit of stem in order to hang the plant, that’s fine, but don’t hang the whole thing out to dry, stem, leaves, flowers, and all. It will just take too long!

How do you dry your herbs? Any other herb harvesting tips?


This post is part of a series about growing herbs indoors. You can see the rest of the posts in the series here.






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Hi, I'm Jessi! Welcome to Practically Functional, a blog about real projects that real people can actually do! You don't have to be a pro in order to craft or do DIY projects; Practically Functional is full of projects for everyday life that anyone can do, regardless of skill or experience! Whether you're looking for fun crafts, DIY projects both big and small, gardening advice, cleaning tips, or quick and easy recipes, you'll find them here! Follow the step by step instructions in every tutorial, and don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions! Make sure you subscribe to free weekly emails so you don't miss a single tutorial!


    • says

      Aww thanks Christine! That rack was sort of born out of necessity; we’re in a small apartment so no basement or garage to hang stuff in, and we have two cats who get everywhere, so I couldn’t just use a screen and leave the herbs out to dry. But it’s really easy to make, and it’s kind of nice having it hanging in our kitchen, even when it isn’t being used. :-)

  1. Sarah says

    Hello there!! Just was stopping by you blog via happy go lucky blog hop!! enjoyed visiting and am now following! would love to have you visit me!!



  2. says

    I just went through your whole series. You did a great job–so much information! I’m inspired to try growing some indoor herbs myself. Your pots and the labels are so cute!

    • says

      Aww thanks Caren, I’m glad it was helpful! And you should definitely try growing some indoor herbs, cuz seriously, if I can do it, anyone can!

  3. says

    This is really a clever space saving idea. Cute too! This came just in time for me.I need to dry my herbs before the weather turns cold. Thanks for sharing at The Gathering Spot. It’s always a pleasure :)

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