Thanks for your responses guys.
rainbowgardener wrote:remember that wannabe is in Houston. Way different climate from Penna and actually kind of difficult for herbs. Lots of herbs do fine with hot and dry, but Houston is warm and humid with 50 " of rain a year.
Basil is a good one for that climate and very easy to grow in containers. The trouble people have been having with it is a disease called basil downy mildew, relatively newly imported fungal disease. Wannabe, you should ask around, like at garden stores, see if people in your area have been having trouble with it. If so, focus on some of the more resistant varieties like red and purple basils, lemon and lime basil, spice basil.
Other possibilities include Mexican tarragon (also called Mexican mint marigold), Mexican oregano which is actually native to TX and an ingredient in a classic TX chili, mints, and chives, All would be fine in containers, just be sure your container mix is very well draining -- consider mixing potting soil with sand or cactus mix to improve drainage.
I was thinking of basil after reading how easy it is but now you have got me scared. I will definitely look into oregano and tarragon.
At the risk of sounding stupid, I have got some questions:
a) Should I start from the seeds or the plants (that you buy from stores like ACE or Lowes etc.)?
b) When you say well draining, do you mean it should have a tiny hole at the base? You say potting soil with sand.. what type of sand is that? Where can I get it?