Chimichurri Garden
  • Save

Growing a Chimichurri Garden: Delight in the Taste and Satisfaction

Apartment LivingHomesteadingLiving Sustainably

What is a Chimichurri Garden?

A chimichurri garden is a specialized garden space dedicated to growing the fresh herbs and vegetables typically used in the making of chimichurri sauce, a vibrant and flavorful condiment originating from Argentina.

This type of garden typically includes essential ingredients such as parsley, oregano, garlic, and optional additions like cilantro or chili peppers. Ideal for culinary enthusiasts looking to enhance their dishes with fresh, homegrown flavors, a chimichurri garden not only provides the key components for this delicious sauce but also offers a delightful introduction to herb gardening.

The appeal of starting with a chimichurri garden is that it can be grown in small spaces and is easy to grow, giving you a win-win experience. It introduces beginners to the fundamentals of gardening while yielding a delicious product that can elevate meals from ordinary to extraordinary.
Whether you have a sprawling backyard or a modest balcony, a chimichurri garden is a great place to start growing your own food and learning to garden. We hope this experience will transform your cooking and connect you more deeply with the flavors of nature.

Chimichurri: Sauce or Condiment?

Chimichurri is traditionally considered a condiment rather than a sauce, much like how we think of ketchup or mustard—terms that stand alone without needing “sauce” as a qualifier.
This vibrant blend of herbs, garlic, vinegar, and oil is a staple in Argentine cuisine. It complements a variety of dishes, particularly grilled meats. While similar preparations are often referred to as “sauces,” chimichurri is best classified as a condiment due to its usage and consistency.
However, for those who might be less familiar with chimichurri, referring to it as a sauce is understandable and acceptable. This approach helps create a clearer picture and invites more people to explore its rich flavors and uses in cooking.


The Essentials of a Chimichurri Garden

At the heart of chimichurri are its fresh, vibrant ingredients, each contributing its unique flavor profile to create a delicious blend.

Key Components of a Chimichurri Garden

  • Parsley (Petroselinum crispum): Often the star of the chimichurri sauce, parsley is a versatile herb that thrives in both sunny and partially shaded areas. It prefers well-drained soil and regular watering, making it a forgiving plant for beginners. Flat-leaf varieties are typically chosen for their robust flavor.
  • Oregano (Origanum vulgare): This hardy perennial offers a pungent, earthy taste that complements the freshness of parsley. Oregano is drought-tolerant once established, requiring less water than parsley, and enjoys full sun to partial shade. Although oregano can be grown from seed indoors, it’s more often bought as young plants. With seeds, you can grow as many plants as you like, but the seedlings need careful attention and plants take longer to reach harvesting size. Ready-grown plants are widely available, settle in quickly and you can start picking leaves almost straight away.
  • Garlic (Allium sativum): Essential for adding depth and pungency to the sauce, garlic is planted in the fall in most climates and harvested in late spring or early summer. It requires full sun and well-drained soil.
  • Optional – Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum) and Chili Peppers: For those looking to add a twist to their chimichurri, cilantro offers a citrusy note, while chili peppers introduce heat. Both plants enjoy similar growing conditions to parsley, with cilantro preferring cooler temperatures and chili peppers thriving in warmth and full sun.

Parsley plant
  • Save

Understanding Growth Requirements

Each plant in the chimichurri garden has its unique set of needs:

  • Sunlight: Most herbs, including parsley and oregano, perform best in full sun to partial shade. A minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight is ideal.
  • Water: Regular, even watering is crucial, especially for parsley and cilantro, to prevent the soil from drying out. However, oregano and chili peppers are more drought-tolerant and can handle slightly drier conditions.
  • Soil: Well-drained soil enriched with organic matter supports healthy growth. Each herb’s specific soil preferences should be considered when planting.

The Importance of Organic Gardening Practices

Using organic methods to grow your chimichurri garden ensures the health of your plants and enhances the flavors of your end product. Avoid synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, opting instead for natural compost, mulching, and organic pest control solutions. These practices promote a sustainable garden ecosystem, beneficial insects, and a more flavorful harvest.

Chimichurri Gardens in Small Spaces

Urban living and small spaces don’t have to limit your gardening ambitions, especially when it comes to growing a vibrant chimichurri garden. Here’s how to maximize your space and ensure your garden thrives.

Vertical Gardening: Maximizing Height

  • Use Vertical Planters: Utilize vertical space by installing wall-mounted planters or creating a trellis system for climbing plants like certain chili pepper varieties. Vertical gardening allows you to grow more in less space.
  • Hanging Baskets: Hanging baskets can be a practical and decorative way to grow herbs like parsley and cilantro. Ensure they are positioned where they can receive ample sunlight.

Container Gardening: Flexibility and Control

  • Select the Right Containers: Choose containers with adequate drainage to prevent waterlogged soil, which can harm your plants. Consider the size of the container as well; larger pots retain moisture for longer periods, which is beneficial for thirsty herbs.
  • Oregano in Containers: Oregano forms a spreading clump, so should be positioned 20–30cm (8–12in) from neighboring plants. If planting in a container, choose one that is at least 15cm (6in) wide for a single young plant, and at least 30cm (12in) wide for several. Make sure there are drainage holes in the base. Fill the pot with a mix of soil-based compost plus coarse grit or perlite (up to 25 percent by volume) to provide good drainage.
  • Optimize Your Balcony or Windowsill: Even a sunny windowsill can be perfect for small herb pots. For balconies, arrange containers to take advantage of the best light while ensuring plants have enough space to grow without overcrowding.

Hydroponic Systems: Soil-Free Gardening

  • Explore Hydroponic Options: For those with very limited space, hydroponic systems offer a soil-free solution for growing herbs. These systems can be set up indoors and require less space than traditional gardening, providing a clean and efficient way to cultivate herbs like parsley and oregano.

Watering and Care in Small Spaces

  • Consistent Watering: Containers and hanging baskets dry out more quickly than ground soil, especially during hot weather. Check your plants daily and establish a regular watering schedule to keep them hydrated.
  • Nutrient Management: Nutrients can be depleted rapidly in container gardens. Use organic compost or a slow-release organic fertilizer to ensure your herbs receive the nourishment they need to flourish. Parsley is a heavy feeder and benefits from extra nitrogen.

Making the Most of Limited Space

  • Rotate Your Plants: Rotate your pots every few days to ensure all sides of your plants receive equal light. This practice encourages even growth and prevents your plants from leaning toward the light source.
  • Prune Regularly: Regular pruning encourages bushier growth and prevents your herbs from becoming leggy. It’s a simple way to manage the size of your plants and boost their productivity.
  • For Parsley: Harvesting too early or too frequently can force the plants to go to seed. Start by picking the outer leaves first to allow the inner leaves time to mature. Cut stems off about 1 to 3 inches above the ground. Use sharp scissors to make a clean cut and avoid damage to the plant.

Cultivating a Chimichurri Garden for Beginner Homesteaders

For those with a bit more space, such as beginner homesteaders or individuals with small yards, the chimichurri garden presents an opportunity to cultivate a diverse range of herbs and vegetables that go beyond basic container gardening.

Utilizing Raised Beds for Efficient Gardening

  • Benefits of Raised Beds: Raised beds offer excellent drainage, improved soil conditions, and easier access for maintenance and harvesting. They also help in clearly defining garden spaces, making it simpler to manage different plants.
    * Designing Your Raised Beds: Plan your raised beds with consideration for sunlight exposure and accessibility. Group plants with similar light and water needs together. For a chimichurri garden, ensure parsley, oregano, and garlic have their dedicated spots, with enough room for their roots to spread.

Embracing Companion Planting

  • Companion Planting Principles: This method involves planting different crops in proximity for pest control, pollination, providing habitat for beneficial creatures, maximizing use of space, and increasing crop productivity.
  • Companion Plants for Your Chimichurri Garden: Marigolds can be planted to deter pests, while basil might enhance the growth and flavor of your herbs.

Polyculture: Mimicking Natural Ecosystems

  • Implementing Polyculture: Instead of planting large blocks of single crops, mix your plants to mimic natural ecosystems. This diversity can lead to healthier plants and soil, reduced pest problems, and a more resilient garden.
  • Benefits for the Chimichurri Garden: Polyculture can be particularly beneficial in a chimichurri garden by allowing you to grow a variety of herbs and vegetables close together, encouraging beneficial interactions among them.

Organic Pest Control Methods

  • Natural Pest Management: Use organic pest control methods to protect your garden without resorting to harsh chemicals. Introduce beneficial insects, use neem oil or insecticidal soaps, and employ physical barriers like row covers to keep pests at bay.
  • Healthy Soil, Healthy Plants: Focus on building healthy soil through the addition of organic matter and compost. Healthy plants are more resistant to pests and diseases.

Crop Rotation and Successive Planting

  • The Importance of Crop Rotation: Rotate your crops each year to prevent soil depletion and reduce the buildup of pests and diseases associated with specific plant families.
  • Successive Planting for Continuous Harvest: Practice successive planting by sowing seeds at intervals throughout the growing season. This ensures a continuous supply of fresh herbs for your chimichurri sauce.

Making the Most of Your Chimicurri Garden Space

Companion Planting for a Flourishing Garden

Benefits of Companion Planting: This practice not only maximizes space but also can improve plant health and yield by fostering beneficial interactions between different species.

Ideal Companions for Your Chimichurri Ingredients:

  • Parsley makes a good companion plant with asparagus, carrots, corn, onions, peas, peppers, and tomatoes. Gardeners have found that parsley can enhance the flavors of companion plants and is a natural pest control.
  • Oregano acts as a general pest deterrent and can benefit nearly all garden vegetables with its strong aroma.
  • Garlic can be planted near most crops to repel pests like aphids and rabbits, thanks to its strong scent.

Succession Planting to Enhance Yield

Succession Planting: Plant new seeds or transplants at intervals rather than all at once. This is particularly effective for herbs like parsley and cilantro, ensuring you have a continuous harvest instead of a single bounty that might go to waste.

Determining the Right Amount of Each Plant

  • Assessing Your Needs: Consider how much chimichurri you consume or plan to use. A small family might need only a couple of parsley and oregano plants, while avid cooks might want several of each.
  • Space Considerations: Be realistic about how much space you have. Space parsley seedlings 6” apart to allow them space to grow.
  • Growing for Preservation: If you plan to dry or freeze herbs for off-season use, you may want to plant extra. Remember, many herbs like parsley and oregano can be harvested multiple times throughout the season.

Tips for Maximizing Space and Yield

Pruning and Maintenance: Regular pruning not only keeps plants healthy and manageable but can also stimulate growth. For herbs, frequent harvesting encourages new leaves to form.


Practical Gardening Tips for Novices

To help ensure your success and make the process as enjoyable as possible, here are some practical tips aimed at novice gardeners. These tips cover the basics of starting your garden, how to tackle common challenges, and the importance of embracing the learning curve that comes with gardening.

Starting Your Chimichurri Garden

Choosing Between Seeds and Seedlings

Beginners may find it easier to start with seedlings, which can offer a sense of immediate gratification and a head start on the growing season.
However, starting from seeds can be more cost-effective and offers a wider variety of plant options.
Parsley seeds are known for being slow to germinate. Seeds can take 10 to 28 days to sprout.
It takes 60 – 70 days for a parsley plant to fully mature.

Soil Preparation

Good soil is the foundation of a healthy garden. For in-ground gardens, enrich the soil with compost to improve fertility and drainage. For container gardens, use a high-quality potting mix designed for vegetables and herbs.

Proper Planting: Follow the planting instructions for each herb and vegetable, paying close attention to spacing requirements and depth. Overcrowding can lead to poor air circulation and competition for nutrients while planting too deep or too shallow can affect germination and root development.

Overcoming Common Gardening Challenges

  • Watering Wisely: Overwatering is a common mistake. Check the soil moisture by sticking your finger an inch into the soil; if it’s dry, it’s time to water. Early morning is the best time to water, allowing the leaves to dry out over the day.
  • Dealing with Pests and Diseases: Keep a close eye on your plants for signs of pests or diseases. Early detection is key. Use organic methods whenever possible, such as introducing beneficial insects, applying neem oil, or removing affected parts of the plant.
  • Adapting to Your Environment: Every gardening environment is unique. Learn from local gardeners, extension services, or gardening clubs about the best practices for your area, including what plants thrive and when to plant them.

Embracing the Learning Process

  • Keeping a Garden Journal: Documenting your gardening journey can be incredibly valuable. Note what you plant, when you plant it, and how it grows, along with any issues or successes. Over time, this record will become an invaluable resource.
  • Patience and Persistence: Some plants might not thrive as expected, and that’s okay. Gardening is a learning experience. Each season brings new challenges and opportunities to grow as a gardener.
  • Celebrating Every Success: Every bit of growth is an achievement. Celebrate your first sprout, your first harvest, and even your learning moments. Gardening is as much about the journey as it is about the destination.

For novice gardeners, starting a chimichurri garden is an excellent way to get acquainted with the basics of gardening while producing a tangible, delicious result. Remember, every gardener was once a beginner, and learning and growing is what makes gardening such a rewarding activity.


From Chimichurri Garden to Table: A Classic Chimichurri Recipe

After dedicating time and care to your chimichurri garden, it’s time to enjoy the fruits of your labor. This classic chimichurri recipe celebrates your garden’s bounty, using fresh herbs to create a versatile condiment that can elevate any meal. It is ideal for grilling season or as a vibrant addition to vegetables, bread, and more. Be warned: This stuff is so good you’ll want to put it on (almost) everything.

Classic Chimichurri Recipe


  • 1 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  •  3-4 tablespoons fresh oregano, finely chopped
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon red chili flakes or chopped peppers from your garden (optional, adjust to taste)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  • Prepare the Herbs and Garlic: Start by washing the parsley and oregano harvested from your garden. Pat them dry and finely chop them. Mince the garlic cloves as finely as possible to ensure they blend well into the sauce. While many other recipes call for using a food processor, all my Argentine and Uruguayan friends swear by chopping by hand for the best flavor.
  • Mix the Ingredients: In a bowl, combine the chopped parsley, oregano, minced garlic, and chopped chilis (if using). Add the red wine vinegar and olive oil, stirring until well combined. The oil and vinegar will help to mellow the garlic’s sharpness and bind the herbs together.
  • Season: Add the red chili flakes (if using) for a bit of heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remember, the flavors will meld and intensify over time, so start with a conservative amount and adjust as needed.
  • Let It Rest: For the best flavor, cover and let the chimichurri sit for at least 30 minutes before serving. This resting period allows the flavors to meld and develop fully.
  • Serve and Enjoy: Serve your chimichurri over grilled meats, vegetables, or as a dipping sauce for bread. Its vibrant color and fresh taste are a delightful addition to any meal.

  • Save

Tips for the Best Chimichurri

  • Use Fresh Ingredients: The key to a great chimichurri is the freshness of the herbs. Using herbs straight from your garden ensures the brightest flavors.
  • Adjust to Your Taste: Feel free to tweak the amounts of each ingredient to suit your palate. Some prefer more garlic or vinegar, while others might want a spicier sauce with additional chili flakes or chopped fresh chilis.
  • Preservation: Chimichurri can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week, allowing the flavors to continue to meld. For longer storage, consider freezing it in ice cube trays for easy portioning.

Creating chimichurri is a rewarding way to bring the tastes of your garden directly to your table. It combines the joy of gardening with the satisfaction of cooking with ingredients you’ve grown yourself. This simple yet flavorful recipe not only adds a special touch to your meals but also celebrates the effort and love you’ve put into nurturing your chimichurri garden.


Growing your own chimichurri garden is more than just an exercise in gardening—it’s a step towards a more sustainable, flavorful, and rewarding way of living. From the smallest of apartment balconies to the sprawling spaces of beginner homesteads, a chimichurri garden offers the unique pleasure of growing, harvesting, and enjoying the fruits of your labor in a delicious and versatile form. This journey not only introduces you to the basics of gardening but also connects you to the culinary traditions of Argentina, allowing you to bring a taste of global cuisine right to your table.

Additional Resources

To further enhance your gardening and culinary journey, consider exploring the following resources:

  • Gardening Books and Guides: Look for publications that focus on herb gardening and organic practices. Books such as “The Vegetable Gardener’s Bible” by Edward C. Smith and “The Complete Herb Book” by Jekka McVicar offer a wealth of information.
  • Online Forums and Communities: Platforms like GardenWeb and the Gardening subreddit provide spaces to ask questions, share experiences, and connect with fellow gardening enthusiasts.
  • Local Gardening Workshops and Classes: Many communities offer workshops through local nurseries, botanical gardens, or extension services. These can be great opportunities to learn hands-on and meet local gardeners.
  • Preservation Guides: To enjoy your herbs year-round, delve into the world of herb preservation. Books like “Preserving Herbs” by Dora Amend and “The Dehydrator Bible” by Jennifer MacKenzie offer guidance on drying, freezing, and other preservation methods.

Other SmallSpacesGreatLife Articles We Think You’ll Love


Salsa Garden: Grow, Learn & Celebrate in Your Small Space

Apartment Homesteading: Guide to Sustainable Living in Small Spaces

The Growing Trend of Micro Homesteading

Top Plants for the Windowsill: Greening Your Small Space

Desktop Garden– Informational Guide & Watex Review

Should I Make or Buy a Vertical Garden?

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!


No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

As you found this post useful...

Follow us on social media!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed

*Some of the links on this page are affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission. This helps support our platform and allows us to continue to provide you with valuable content. The prices are the same whether you use our affiliate link or not, and using our link does not influence our recommendations. Thank you for your support!

Related Articles