How to Grow Fenugreek : Guide to Growing Methi

Fenugreek (Trigonella Foenum-Graecum) is an annual growing herb native to the Mediterranean and Western Asia. Fenugreek leaves are not only very easy to grow from seeds in pots or ground at home, but also extremely beneficial herb.

Fenugreek leaves are very easy to grow from seeds in pots or ground. Read on the following step-by-step guide on how to grow fenugreek from seeds in containers or ground at home, even indoors.

Fenugreek is known by various names like Methi, Greek Hay, Foenugreek, Fenigreek, Bird’s Foot, Hilba, Trigonella, Cow’s Horn, Goat’s Horn, etc.

The fresh fenugreek leaves (methi greens) are used in some Indian dishes and veggie curries and seeds in curry powders. Methi leaves are used in Thepla, which are very popular in Gujarati meals, and are used for regular meals, breakfast and during travelling.

The fenugreek methi leaves are dried and used in cooking as a spice. Fenugreek leaves dried are known as Kasuri Methi or kasoori methi. India is the largest grower of fenugreek. fenugreek leaves have many health benefits.

Growing Fenugreek From Seeds

Fenugreek Plant Description

Fenugreek leaves
Fenugreek Methi Leaves
The fenugreek plant can grow to a height of 60 cm. It has three-lobed triangular leaves (See the picture), hence the generic name trigonell. The plant produces yellow flowers which form beans containing fenugreek seeds. The fenugreek methi grows very quickly.

When to Plant

  1. Fenugreek grows well in spring to early autumn seasons, specially when the soil is warm. I have also grown it in winter in Sydney but the growth is slow. Fenugreek grows best when the temperature is between 10 to 30 °C (50 to 90 °F).
  2. In the areas of frost, it may be started indoors 5 weeks prior to the last frost of the season. 

Planting Position For Fenugreek

Fenugreek should be planted in full sun to part shade.

Soil For Growing Fenugreek

  1. Methi grows well in a neutral to slightly acid (pH 6.0-7.0) soil.
  2. Dig the ground to a depth of 25 cm and break big chunks of soil. Mix some river sand to make it free draining (vegetable garden soil).
  3. Mix lots of organic material like compost (composting) and aged manure to make the soil fertile.

To Grow fenugreek in Containers or Ground?

The fenugreek methi can be grown in any container or ground. The advantage of growing it in a pot is that it can be moved to indoors in the case of frost. I grow in ground and in a rectangular Styrofoam fruit box of height about 10 inches.

Methi Seeds
Fenugreek Seeds

Sowing the Fenugreek Seeds

  1. The plant does not like to be transplanted after germination, so the fenugreek seeds should be sown at the final place. Or you can sow seeds (See picture) in biodegradable pots which can be put directly into the ground later on.
  2. Buy good quality seeds from garden shop or use the seeds from your previous crop. I, however, buy fenugreek seeds from Indian grocery shop, which grow well.
  3. Sow seeds about 5 mm deep and 50 mm apart in straight line trenches for seed sowing. You can also sow the seeds in criss-cross patterns. In stead of sowing in trenches, you can just sprinkle the seeds on the bed and cover with soil.
  4. Water well and keep soil well-moistened.
  5. Seeds will germinate in 3-5 days.
  6. In the areas of frost, it may be started indoors 5 weeks prior to the last frost of the season. The seedlings can be transplanted outdoors when the soil temperature is around 15°C (60°F).
  7. I sow seeds every 2-3 weeks in the season, so that when the first set of plants die, I am having the next set to get fresh green methi leaves.
Picture of Methi Plants Growing in a Pot
Methi Plants Growing in a Pot


Keep the soil moist, but do not over-water.

Fertilizer for Fenugreek Plants

  1. Feed the fenugreek plants with fish emulsion spray regularly.
  2. Fenugreek plants add nitrogen to the soil as broad beans do, so they are good to add nitrogen to the soil.

Harvesting Fenugreek Leaves

Methi leaves will be ready to harvest within 3-4 weeks. I just chop the fenugreek leaves from the top of the plants as and when I need it in the kitchen. This will encourage more growth and you will be able to harvest again fresh leaves after 2-3 weeks.

Harvesting Fenugreek Seeds

  1. The plants will produce beans containing fenugreek seeds.
  2. If you want to make fenugreek seeds, continue feeding and watering till the plants start to die.
  3. Collect the seed pods and thresh them to extract the seeds. Leave the seeds in the sun to dry.
  4. Save the pods until you sow the seeds next time.
  5. Store the methi seeds can be stored in an air-tight container and keep in a dry, dark spot.

How To Store Fresh Methi Leaves For Long

You can store fenugreek leaves for many months almost as fresh as the new ones, with no change in their colour, taste or flavour. The method is given below:
  1. Harvest fresh fenugreek leaves from your plants or buy from the market.
  2. Chop the leaves roughly and wrap in aluminium foil lightly. Make 2-3 such packets.
  3. Put the packets in a Ziplock bag and freeze it.
  4. When you want to use the fenugreek methi leaves, simply take out a packet, open it and wash and use.
  5. It is better not to wash the leaves before chopping to reduce moisture, otherwise the leaves will rot in the fridge.

Making Fenugreek Sprouts

You may be wondering how to make fenugreek sprouts at home. Yes, it is simple. Put fenugreek seeds in a jar and cover with 3-4 inch of water above the seeds. Drain the water and cover seeds with a muslin cloth and leave in a dark place. The seeds will sprout in 2-3 days.


  1. Trigonella foenum-graecum information from NPGS/GRIN,
  2. V. A. Parthasarathy, K. Kandinnan and V. Srinivasan (ed.). "Fenugreek". Organic Spices. New India Publishing Agencies. p. 694.


Please tell me, can I grow methi in a small container like a fruit box?

You can grow methi or fenugreek in any pot, small or large. You can place them in your kitchen window where it can receive sun light. cut off the leaves as and when required.

How can I get regular fresh methi leaves in the season from my kitchen garden?

Prepare two garden beds or containers for growing fenugreek. Sow seeds in one of the spots and after 3-4 weeks sow seeds in the second one. When the plants in the first spot begin to die, the methi will be ready to harvest in the second one. Keep on repeating this.

Hi .. I have sowed the fenugreek seeds indoors but yesterday I could see white hair on the roots of the sprouts .. Is it mold or is it fine ? I want to fix this right away . Pls help me

When the fenugreek seeds germinate, white hairy thing will develop which will form a tony leaf.

I planted my Fenugreek about 6 weeks ago, just harvested my first batch. A strong maple smell is in the air around my pots which is the smell I am familiar with. The Methi I buy in stores has the same aroma.

However I cut out a large bunch of leaves to wash/dry, and they just have a strong earthy smell to them. No maple smell at all once they are out of the garden. I proceeded to dry them anyway and there was no change.

What did I do wrong? Did I harvest too early?

The typical methi flavour will come back when it is cooked.

The typical methi flavour will come back when it is cooked.

The best blog on kitchen gardening. Under sowing it is mentioned 5 cm deep, we presume 5 mm deep.

Yes, the methi seeds should be sown 5 mm deep. Thanks.

Oh is mm...oops. Hope my galangal grows now :'-

No words to express my gratitude for the knowledge that I have got here.
Thank you ��

My seedlings r started to dry out can u help me in this regard? Thanks

Keep the seedlings moist.

My fenugreek plants soon develops beens, should I pluck them?

You can use fenugreek leaves 2-3 times, after that the plant produce flowers and beans. You have to sow new seeds. However, you can mix the plants i the soil as they are the green manure, adding nutrients to the soil.

Do I need to soak the seeds overnight before planting.the ordinary kitchen spice variety.

How to get seeds from Fenugreek plants?

It is not necessary to soak the fenugreek seeds before sowing. However, if you soak, the germination will take 1 day day less. You can use kitchen spice variety, you will see germination/sprouts in 4-5 days. Keep soil damp.

To make seeds from the fenugreek plant, let the plant grow to flower and produce beans. Take out the seeds when the beans mature. It is better to buy fenugreek seeds from market.

I tried to grow them indoor in a small wood container, only the stem grows fast, Leaves dont develop. I tried couple of times it is the same. I have tried my hands on different seeds, but result is same.

This is surprising. It shouldn't have happened. When the seeds germinate, they produce 2 leaves. Next time try cutting the growing ends, and see the new growth should have leaves.

I tried several times the germinate well n very soon they fall down n die
seeds from different sources were tried but result is same I always kept them outdoors.

The fenugrrek plants should not die, keep the soil moist。The water should not stand on the soil for long, means the soil should be free draining.

I am growing fenugreek from past 3 weeks. My leaves have never been dark green. It was always pale green but now it's starting to become yellow and some plants are falling . What am I doing wrong

Minu, it may be due to inadequate watering, water the fenugreek plants daily. Add some cow manure to soil.

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