In short:

  • Harvest regularly to stimulate new growth and get fresh, tasty herbs
  • Wait to harvest until the plants are about 10-15 cm (4-6") tall
  • Harvest a maximum of ⅓ of the plant at a time (rule of thumb)
  • Ensure all plants get enough light

Most herbs and lettuce are ready for harvest within 4-7 weeks, depending on the temperature. The optimal temperature is 20-25°C (68-77°F), and below 19°C (66°F), growth is very slow. 

See the video or read further down to learn more👌🏻



Trim (prune) regularly from the top-down:

Most herbs (such as basil, oregano, mint, dill, rosemary, and thyme) can be trimmed from the top. For the best results, cut the plant right above the nodes where new leaves grow out:

Plants photosynthesize in their leaves, so if you cut off some leaves at the top, new leaves will continue to grow. You should avoid cutting off too much of the plant at once, as this may cause the plant to die. We recommend 1/3 of each plant at a time and always leaving at least one pair of leaves. 

Some plants (e.g. parsley and cilantro) should be trimmed from the bottom:

To encourage new growth in herbs like parsley and cilantro, you should trim them from the bottom. Cut whole stems above the roots, but don't take more than 1/3 of each plant at once.

The lower leaves will get more light, and new stems and leaves will grow.

Salads (e.g. arugula and romaine) can be harvested by cutting off the large, outermost leaves:

Salads like arugula and romaine thrive in Auk. However, these can be more difficult to keep alive for a long time, but if you always harvest the outer leaves and have enough small plants in the middle, you can get a steady supply of salad that lasts several months.

Be careful not to cut off the innermost leaves, as they will ensure that you get new growth.

Do you need to thin out your plants?

If a pot gets crowded as plants grow bigger, you can thin it out by cutting off whole stems, even on the plants that you’d normally harvest from the top.

Make sure all plants get enough light

Plants grow best in direct exposure to light. If larger leaves from fast-growing plants cast shadows on smaller neighbors, consider trimming them down to distribute the light evenly. 

Some of the fast growers are arugula and parsley. Slower-growers are basil, oregano, mint, and thyme. 

Here is an example:

Here, the basil is in the shade, so it grows more slowly. To solve this, either move the basil straight beneath the plant light or trim the other plants.

Trim your plants to prevent them from blooming

You should harvest the herbs before they start blooming. When herbs bloom, they enter a new phase where the taste can get bad. Auk provides both light and nutrients that slow down blooming, but it can't stop it completely; you should help by harvesting regularly.

Regular harvest will stimulate new growth, and give you happy plants that keep giving  :)