This was my first ever attempt at growing Basil, and what an impact it made on my garden, and my kitchen! Of course, if you are not a fan of Basil there would be no need to grow it, but as a lover of Pesto and the multitude of other uses for this heaven “scent” plant I can’t begin to imagine a garden without it.
I purchased two well established, 8″ tall plants in early Summer and had more than enough growth to provide ample leaves for picking. Although it can be grown directly form seed with great success, [go here to find over 25 varieties of seeds] I opted for the immediate satisfaction of seeing an established plant without waiting for germination.
I felt that the soil I have created in my gardens would be sufficient for its new home, and boy was I right! The ideal pH for growing basil can range anywhere between 5.5 and 6.5, so be mindful when planting to check and balance the soil. I planted the sturdy transplants right next to my Asparagus which help give slight afternoon shade to its tender leaves. Even from an early stage, I pinched and pruned to create a good solid branching plant that would provide me with all the fresh stemmed cuttings I could possible use and give away.
Basil is one of those plants that you border your garden with. It can also take center stage in a show stopping mix of color and textures when combined with the endless varieties on the market today. The variety you see in the picture to the left is Genovese, a somewhat common variety of Basil that can be found at most nurseries. Sturdy, easy to grow, very prolific, very heat resistant and most importantly consistent to the temperature of the tropics known as Texas.