May 1, 2010

Grow your own Basil 2010

Basil SeedsPLANT: ‘Genovese’ Basil

Basil Genovese is the most commonly grown variety. Taller with larger leaves. Ideal to use in salads especially with tomatoes, pasta sauces and combines well with garlic.

I had some success growing basil last year, but it did much better grown indoors as something kept eating what I’d left outdoors planted next to my tomatoes.


Sow under cover: January - December 26th Feb
Sow direct: May - June  
Germination time: 7-21 days 7th Mar
Plant out: 4 weeks after germination  
Time from seed to plate: 60 days  



  • Sow seed thinly, 6mm deep.
  • When seedlings are large enough to handle, prick out into trays of compost at 5cm apart.


  • After 4 weeks plant one plant per 15cm pot and place under protection or in sunny sheltered position outside. Alternatively, transplant into the open ground 25cm apart in a sunny, sheltered position.


  • 15 days after transplanting pinch out growing points of the plants to produce bushy plants. Remove flowering shoots to increase the harvest of leaves.


March 7th:
07-03 Basil sprouted

The basil have started to germinate as I turned up the heating, as like tomatoes they need quite a high temperature (between 15-20°C) to sprout.
March 13th:
13-03 Basil

The basil has made some progress in the past week, with 6 out of 7 seeds sprouting and having formed their first two true leaves.

06-04 BasilMy basil seedlings are about 4cm tall, so today I transplanted them into 7.5cm pots as they’ve developed a second set of leaves now. They looked a bit droopy after transplanting, but after a bit of water they seemed to improve their posture.




06-04 Basil 2

Unfortunately I had to do my re-potting outside and it was a windy day, so some of the delicate basil leaves suffered from windburn. I’m sure they’ll bounce back as I’m keeping all my basil plants indoors.










15-04 BasilThe basil seedlings seem to have recovered from the transplant and are making slow and steady progress. They’re all roughly 3cm tall now and the set of true leaves are starting to look more like mature basil leaves in their shape with the wrinkle down the centre.








01-05 BasilThe basil are doing OK although I might have overwatered them as some of the leaves are looking a bit off colour around the edges. The leaves are getting much bigger now and are starting to become more crinkled. New leaves are developing from the centre.


I should really be putting them in larger pots now but I’ve been too busy playing with the new dogs!


I must also remember to pinch out the growing points of the plants to produce bushy plants, as I forgot to do it last year and the plants became tall and spindly.


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