Growing basil

Growing basil:

This is one of the most widely used herbs in cooking, for sauces, meat sauces and salads, alone or in combination with other herbs. Basil is best when it is fresh, and for this reason it is always good to have at least a few plants on the kitchen windowsill. Basil is bought as vigorous seedlings, but if you want it is also possible to sow it as seed, from April until the end of summer, to get vigorous plants in a few weeks.

It is an annual plant, so if you want to grow it long-term it is good to reseed or buy new plants every 2-3 months. Position it in a corner that is not too sunny, and remember to water it often, because the thin foliage requires a soil that is always fresh and cannot stand drought.

If you want to keep the plants in the long term, as soon as you see the flowers sprouting from the apex of the stems, twist off all the little stems with your fingers, so as to prevent the plant from flowering and going to seed: because immediately after the production of seeds the plant tends to dry out. Before the leaves yellow, cut them all and put them either under oil or in the freezer. In fact, the essential oils of basil are so volatile that you do not keep the dry leaves.

[(Growing and Using Basil)] [Author: Ellen Ecker Ogden] published on (December, 1990)

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