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  • Writer's pictureAdam Raymond

Being Successful Growing Basil

Basil is one of those plants in which people are either successful growing it or not. In my discussion with individuals, there seems to be no middle ground. Either you are successful in growing them or not. I was one of those individuals who always seemed to kill my basil plants. One day, I was standing in line at Lowe's buying a basil plant, and the lady behind started talking about her basil plants in the garden. She described her plants as big as yard bushes, and they grew so well she considered it a pain to take of them.

So I got down on my hands and knees and begged her for the secrets to basil. Ok, that did not happen, but I started to ask questions. Over the next five minutes, she discussed everything I was doing wrong and how to grow basil. Her secret was straightforward. Since then, basil is a weed in my garden that now grows by seed everywhere.

Basil wants to die. That was the big secret. One of the biggest mistakes you can make with basil is not cutting the blooms off your basil plants. The little white flowers look beautiful and attract lots of insect friends, but in short, the basil will put all its energy into flowering. If you want the plant to put energy into growing more leaves, you need to trim the flower buds. Trimming will cause it to produce more offshoots and start to be a bushier basil plant. If you do this regularly, you will have excellent full basil plants.

Basil plants can also be affected by the size of the pot. The herbs need a medium to large size pots or planted directly in the garden. Second, you need to keep up a watering schedule. They do not like sitting in wet soil but do require watering regularly. In the summer months, basil may require a little bit of daily watering to survive the hotter weather. With substrate, most of my basil plants have been planted in regular garden soil and seem to do quite well.

The pictures I have included are my green and purple basil plants in full bloom, which need a trimming tomorrow. These plants are in full sun most of the day. One last trick I use is not to trim off the entire flower stock. I always trim 2/3 of the flower stock leaving a bit to create seed for the next generation. The one problem I do have with basil is the cold weather. When we get more than a few days of below-freezing weather. If not covered correctly, basil has a hard time with frost, which will kill the plant.

Thank you for taking the time to read my small article on growing basil. This plant is one of my favorite garden plants as it is easy to grow and gives off a sweet fragrance in the garden.


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