More than any other kind of plant, herbs are probably the best choice for your garden. Herbs are plants that can be used for food preparation and for folk medicine. There are even plants that can be used for both purposes. So they are extremely beneficial and it is not surprising why we are seeing them more and more in gardens today.
Basil- which has the scientific name of Ocimum basilicum is one of the most well known culinary herbs available today. In some countries it is also known as Saint Joseph’s Wort. This herb came originally from India, but it has spread to different parts of the world already. It has also become a major component of some of the most important cooking in the world such Italian and Indian dishes. It gives a taste that is similar to anise and it has a strong and distinctive smell. The leaves are the part of the plant used as a herb. It is generally added fresh in some cooking although it is only added at the last part of the process since the heat can destroy the flavour of the leaves.
How to grow basil at home?
Growing of basils need only small and simple requirement and if these requirements are not fulfilled then it will cause the plan to die soon. How to grow basil can be answered if you take care of the basic needs like that of proper light and temperature supplemented to it. The light and temperature factor should be simple and moderate and should suit the basil plant.
Know the nuance as to How to grow basil
There is some preparation process to know How to grow basil. If you have made up your mind to grow the basils in pot then you need not worry much about how to grow basil as it is quiet an easy task. Make sure that you leave enough space in the base so that the excess water can seep out of the pot. This will not cause to plant to die or become decomposed because of excess addition of water by those of them who does not know How to grow basil.
How to grow basil guide
On the other hand if you have planned to grow the basils in an outside environment like that of a garden then you should be well versed in How to grow basil to get the good results for healthy basil to grow in your household. How to grow basil question seems to have gripped many as basil is fast turning out to be one of the most easy to grow plants. So all the plant lovers are opting for basil plant and wants to know How to grow basil which they get to know by browsing the net or reading books on How to grow basil.
Sowing of basil requires careful regime and if you have decided to sow out then you should be open to the temperature factor. It is not advisable to sow the sapling in the month of March as the temperature will be at its peak during this period and may cause the plant to die. Soil that you want to make use for growing the basil also matters a lot and you need to be careful. Shy away the question and thoughts as to How to grow basil and start the action.
How to Grow Basil?
The great thing about basil, if you want to add it to your garden, is that it can easily adapt to the soil and water conditions of your garden. That means it would really not require any special care or steps on your part.
Soil type to grow basil
The best soil type for growing basil is one that is pH balanced and is rich in nutrients. If your soil has a lot of peat mixture to it, then that can be ideal too. You can grow it on a container or on the garden directly but just keep in mind that you need to keep it free from weeds first. If you do not have any experience in working with other types of plants then I would suggest that you try to grow your basil from seedling first. Trying to grow them from seeds might require some skill that you still do not possess.
Sun and water
Basil would need about 6 to 8 hours of sunlight each day, so you must pick a spot that can provide that. Do not water the leaves of the basil plant directly. They are fragile and can get damaged quite easily. You can water the plants everyday or as it is needed.
These are just some of the things that you need to keep in mind when you are growing basil. These plants can be very handy when it comes to preparing some very tasty dishes.
Uses of growing basil
There are many uses for the herb basil. Many know its uses for culinary cooking; however, basil has been around for centuries for other uses, such as medicine and deters pests from gardens. There are many types of basil to be grown. Some include sweet basil (Bush basil), camphor basil, tree basil, and holy basil to name a few.
Even though most know that basil is the main ingredient in many Italian dishes, sweet basil, to be exact. There are, however, many other uses for the different types of basil out there. Camphor basil can be used as a tea to aid in stomach digestion. Tree basil and lemon basil can be planted in gardens to deter flies and mosquitoes.
Whatever the use, basil is an all-around essential herb to have around from everything to cooking and seasoning to medicinal purposes and the ability to grow it in your own home takes little to no effort with the right soil, growing conditions (inside or outside), the right amount of sunshine and patience.
First you have to choose the right type of basil. Although there are many types, some thrive better than other’s depending on the growing conditions. It’s best to start with something simple, like sweet basil, which is pretty easy to grow and maintain and reaping its many cooking benefits is just another perk.
Basil does best when it is planted in a high superiority, pH balanced potting soil. You can also make your own mixture using regular potting soil with a cup of perlite and two cups of peat. You need to maintain moisture to insure proper root growth. Make sure if you are planting inside that the pot is big enough to hold the root structure as it grows.
Choosing whether to grow your basil from a seed or seedling is the next step. Seedlings are already young plants that have started growing. If you are a novice grower and this is your first time attempting to grow basil, a seedling is your best choice. They can be found at any local nursery or home improvement store. If you choose a seed, start growing it indoors in late winter and the relocate the plant outdoors after the last frost. Basil does well in warm, dry weather and needs anywhere from six to eight hours of direct sunlight and cannot be around temperatures below 48 degrees. Being an Alaskan myself where sunlight is pretty scarce in the winter, a sunlamp may help with the growing process. Also, be sure to water only at the base of the plant, not the leaves, as they can become damp and rotten.
Now that you are well on your way to growing your own basil for whatever purpose, there is the final step in harvesting your magnificent herb. It varies from plant to plant, but you can usually tell by the leaves. When the leaves start growing in sets of two, which is about after the plant has reached a foot. Once the leaves are at three pairs, it’s time to start harvesting. Sometimes it is better to wait till there are at least four or six, but three is okay. Please be sure to prune your basil regularly. Once you see the first flower growing, prune it right away. The flowers detract from the taste and smell of the basil, which is not what is the desired effect.
Once you’ve done all that, it’s time to start harvesting. There are two ways to do this, either by cutting the leave off of the stem or pinching or picking the leaf right off the stem. When cutting the leaf off of the stem, the leaves do grow back, so you will always have a fresh supply ready to come forward and bloom. Now, when all is said and done and you have a healthy, fragrant plethora of beautiful basil herbs, it’s time to start cooking those wonderful meals using the freshest of ingredients.
Various Types of Basil
A part of family Lamiaceae or mint family, basil is one of the most well known herbs all over the globe that serve different uses and purposes. Sweet basil is the most common type that is used for cooking and for thousands of years, this has been a usual part of the best Italian dishes. With its 150 varieties, there is certainly a limitless option when it comes to the dishes that use basil as one of the main ingredients. If you do not yet know the different types of basil and their specific uses, here are several of the most famous and not so famous basil types which you can even grown right in your very own garden and use for the different dishes that you cook.
African Blue Basil
This basil type one of those which can tolerate cold environment. This possesses an aromatic and strong camphor scent. The young plant of African blue has purple leaves which actually turn to green when it matures.
Cinnamon basil obviously has cinnamon’s strong scent which was brought by the chemical known as cinnamate, responsible for giving it its cinnamon flavor. The mature cinnamon basil plant have small up to medium sized leaves. Cinnamon basil is usually being added to several fruits and used for making hot drinks.
Referred to as tulsi, holy basil is used commonly in Thai teas and cuisine. A native of Old World Tropics, the holy basil is often grown as a kind of weed. For many years, holy basil is being used for healing people and in several portions of India, this is even being worshipped.
This kind of basil is basically a hybrid between African basil and basil, usually grown in North Africa and south Asia. The typical plant grows around 8-15 inches in height and has narrow leaves. Famous due to its strong scent of lemon, this is usually used for Indonesian and Thai dishes as well as Laos’s cuisine.
Red Rubin Basil
This is a sweet and unique kind of basil whose leaves are of dark purple. It has a sweet flavor like that of sweet basil and is commonly used as garnish and in salads.
With flavors of mint and licorice, Thai basil is being used in both Vietnamese and Thai cuisines. Its stems are purple and it has tiny green leaves. Thai basil is perfect for chicken, pork, seafood and curry sauces.
Sweet basil is actually one of world’s most essential and common culinary and is even referred to as the king of all herbs. The Italian dishes can never be complete without sweet basil, including pizza, pasta, meat and salad dishes as well as sauces.
True enough, basil is one herb that will remain to be an essential part of the lives of many individuals from all over the world. Its different types all have their special uses, making it a main herb that plays an important part in completing many dishes and giving them their best taste.