How to Grow Basil is probably easier than you may think it to be.
I like how there are so many ways to enjoy the basil that I have grown.
How to Grow Basil
In some ways, basil is about the easiest plant to grow.
However, in other ways, basil can a bit tricky.
Did you see my article on How to Build a Small Space Herb Garden?
Small space gardens are often the perfect solution for a garden.
Basil can be the perfect plant to grow in your small garden as well.
There are actually many kinds of basil to choose from. You can find a variety of basil seeds to plant here.
People ask what is basil.
You probably already know that basil is an herb.
Sweet basil is possibly the most well known or popular variety of basil thanks to its large leaves and sweet scent.
Because of the size of the leaves on a basil plant, there are many culinary uses for it.
Maybe you have enjoyed a tasty Caprese salad or pizza that has had whole basil leaves.
Or, sliced, chopped, or torn basil leaves on top of pasta, in soups, or in your favorite sauce.
Why should you grow basil?
Well, for the effort that you put into growing the plant, the result is quite impressive.
That is, basil is relatively simple to grow however, it is a beautiful plant with deep and larger green leaves.
Yes, basil is a very popular culinary herb that you will probably get plenty of use from.
However, there are some health benefits that may also be associated with growing basil.
These benefits include gut and digestion health, anti-inflammatory help and basil can help detoxify the body.
Tips for growing basil.
Basil can grow to up to a foot and a half in size.
It is best to plant the basil in a container or area in the ground that can support that height.
More tips for you
- How to plant basil- there are several ways to plant your basil. This includes from seeds, from a cutting, or transplanting a basil plant.
- Taking care of the basil plant is not a big deal. You can cut the basil back as needed and fertilize it once a month.
- Cultivating and using basil. You can cultivate the basil by cutting it at the stem. Then simply use the leaves as desired in your kitchen creations.
How to plant basil.
Basil is one of the easiest plants to propagate to soil. Simply stick the stem into good soil and in about a month you should see some roots.
However, you can always plant basil seeds or replant a store bought seedling if you choose to.
Basil can be grown indoors or outdoors.
What you should know is that basil does not love cold weather.
If you want your basil year round and you live in location that can get cold, do what I do and plant your basil in a container that can go from indoors to outdoors.
Here is what basil needs to grow.
- Soil- basil likes fertile soil that is well drained with plenty of space between plants.
- Basil loves the sun (six to eight hours a day) and heat (over 70 degrees).
- Water your basil (at the base) well on a weekly basis as the roots like to be moist. Adding mulch around the plant can help keep the roots moist.
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Taking care of the basil plant
Prune back your basil regularly to help it grow healthy.
Also, do not allow the basil to flower as this can affect future leaf growth.
Fertilizer for basil can be applied monthly.
While this may not have to be done every month, you may want to fertilize the basil if the leaves start to get lighter in color.
It is best to follow the directions on the packaging.
Cultivating and using basil
I admit that I often just pick off a leaf from my basil when I need fresh basil for a recipe (or a quick snack). However, you can cultivate basil to thin out the plants, share with others, or just to have on hand.
Here is how to cultivate your basil.
- Use garden shears to cut the stem of the basil plant.
- Make the cut just above leaves that are in pairs.
- Never cut more than half of the entire plant at a time.
Use your cut basil right away or store it for later use.
When I cut basil that has grown in my garden rather than a container, I like to rinse it off.
Just as with other plants, the leaves can get dirty and need some rinsing off.
How to store basil.
Because of the size of the leaves, basil is often used or eaten as is.
You cant eat basil raw in your salad or place it on top of your pizza before it gets baked in the oven.
Basil can be dried.
You can easily dry out your basil by bundling it by the stem and hanging the bundle upside down in a warm dry room. In about a week or two you will be able to pull off the dried leaves, use a mortar and pestle (or similar item) to crush it up, and then store it for later use with your other herbs and spices.
Basil can also be frozen.
Yes, you can simply place your basil in a zip top bag and place it into a freezer.
However, you can also freeze the basil in soup stock or water (in an ice cube tray) for later use in a sauce or other creation!
Fresh basil can also be refrigerated.
If you plan on using your fresh basil within a few days, why not just refrigerate it?
I rinse and dry my basil and the wrap it in a paper towel before placing it in a plastic bag or my lettuce holder.