A bit about Basil

by Ada Riddle

What's Basil?

Basil is a low growing herb that is happy in a large, deep pot. It's the star of many Italian dishes and is also very prominent in Vietnamese and Thai cooking.

When do I sow my basil? 

In a temperate climate (like Sydney) basil can be grown between September and December. If you're starting in September then plant undercover in seed trays and transplant to a pot or your garden from October onwards.

Companion plants:

Basil will happily live side by side with tomatoes (sounds like a perfect meal). You can also companion plant with asparagus, beans, beets, cabbage, chilli and bell peppers, eggplant, marigolds,oregano and potatoes.

How to sow:

  • Prepare your garden bed or container with plenty of compost.
  • Sow seeds at a depth of about a ¼ of an inch.
  • Basil will thrive if you plant it at soil temperatures between 18°C and 35°C.
  • When you transplant the basil make sure that the plants are 10-12 inches apart (or in their own container if you're planting in pots).
  • Ensure that basil plants get 6 to 8 hours of sun a day and are regularly watered.

If you live in a very hot climate then I'd advise mulching around the base of your plant to prevent your soil from drying out.

Basil is an important part of the garden, awesome in food and a start to your dream garden.

Welcome to the cycle!

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