Herbs planted in a patio container for summer cocktails

Create a cocktail garden for the freshest drinks!

Do you love a craft cocktail? Oh, me too! One of my favorite things in the summer is to serve up a pretty cocktail in a beautiful glass made with the freshest ingredients and drink it sitting on my porch (also known as my happy place), watching the world go by. Having fresh herbs is one of the key secrets to a wonderful cocktail, so this season, I decided to create a cocktail garden for the freshest drinks.

What do you need to create your Cocktail Garden?

No Yard? No problem. A container cocktail garden is perfect for patios, balconies, urban gardeners, or those of us who want the freshest ingredients but are working on a small scale.

The beauty of a cocktail garden is that it’s all about your preferences. Are you a mixologist who has a vast array of favorite summer cocktail recipes? Or maybe you love a Mint Julep and only want to plant 4 or 5 different varieties of mint in your cocktail garden—plant for YOUR favorite beverages.

I decided to use a planter I made with an old Libby’s crate, to which I added some modern hairpin legs. This will make watering very easy and allow me to snip herbs as I need them.

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Preparing to plant herbs into a vintage crate.

To prep the container, I filled it halfway with empty plastic bottles (the crate is about 12 inches deep) and added small rocks around those to keep the weight down. I then covered that with some fine mesh for well-draining soil and added the potting soil.

My cocktail garden will live this summer on my covered porch. On the porch, It will get four hours of full sun and keep the neighborhood deer from munching on the plants. It will extend my growing season well into late fall, and as a bonus, as the breeze blows through the screens this summer, it will smell divine.

Choosing your plants for a Cocktail Garden.

I love shopping at my local nursery for plants of all kinds, and shopping for herbs is no exception. Choose healthy plants (I like mine to be compact). My best advice on which herbs to add to your cocktail garden is to choose herbs that go with your favorite cocktails! Add something new to you, and most of all, have fun with it!

I am combining perennial and annual herbs in my container. When planting, I place my plants slightly closer than recommended, as I don’t want them to grow too big.

Be careful if planting into the ground, as some herbs can become invasive. I’m looking at you, Mr. Mint.

This is what I am planting in my cocktail garden this season.

  • Basil
  • Rosemary
  • Lavender
  • Sage
  • Lemon Balm
  • Golden Oregano
Planting an herb garden for summer cocktails into a patio container.

I would have added mint (for a classic mojito), but I have a few herbs growing in my kitchen, and mint is one of them (I am a big fan of chocolate mint).

A Libby's crate planted with herbs for a cocktail garden.

Some other great additions you could try:

  • Tarragon
  • Thyme
  • Lemon Verbena
  • Chives
  • Lemongrass
  • Thai Basil
Herbs planted into a Libby's crate as a container cocktail garden.

Here is my finished planted Container Cocktail Garden. It is enjoying some early morning sunshine.

Patio container planted with herbs for a cocktail garden

I used these mini clay pots to mark herb varieties in my cocktail garden. Labeling things is always a good idea for me. :-

Mini clay pots as garden markers.

The little white nursery markers work fine; I just wanted something pretty to look at.

Mini Clay pot as plant markers.

Garden-Fresh Mixers

Now that everything is planted, it’s time to enjoy the fruits of my labor! Let’s start by whipping up a cocktail that is a summer favorite of mine.

Harvesting basil from a cocktail garden.

Basil Blueberry Vodka Lemonade

This refreshing summer cocktail highlights the fresh ingredients (locally sourced blueberries and my fresh basil) and is lovely as a mocktail as well.

  • 1.5-2 oz vodka
  • 1.5 oz basil blueberry simple syrup
  • 1.5 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 oz sparkling water or club soda
  • Ice Cubes
  • Blueberries, fresh basil, fresh limes, or lemon slices to garnish.

Next on my list of delicious cocktail recipes to try is one that puts a fresh twist on a pitcher of Basil Gimlets! Yum! I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Basil Blueberry Vodka Lemonade

What do you think? Are you ready to create your very own cocktail herb garden? What herbs will you add to yours?

Cocktail Garden planted with herbs for fresh summer cocktails.

Are you looking for some pretty glassware for your summer cocktails? These are my current favorites, and these are soooo cute too.

Cheers,

-Libbie

You may also enjoy these cocktail recipes:

Spicy Garden Paloma

Galentine’s Day Cocktails

Frozen Blackberry-Lime Margarita with a popsicle garnish

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  1. Linda Primmer says:

    Such a clever idea. Fresh herbs for cocktails. I am pleased to feature your creative cocktail garden at Love Your Creativity.

  2. Kippi Ohern says:

    Now this is a good idea!!! How is your other garden doing?

    Happy Summer,
    Kippi

  3. Christine Carlin says:

    Amazing I’m trying to do literally every thing to keep my self busy and watching little things grow.. I love seeing my plaints grow up. It’s a stress reliever as well

  4. Grandma's House DIY says:

    Thanks for sharing with us I’m featuring you when the next To Grandma’s house we go link party starts!

  5. Carol says:

    What a fabulous idea and I love the crate you found. Featuring when my link party opens. Thanks for sharing!

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