BASIL, Genovese Italian

Ocimum basilicum. Fresh basil is one of the most popular herbs. It is admired for its flavour and aroma, as a companion plant in vegetable gardens and for its lovely foliage colours in ornamental plantings. Basil leaves are good in salads and add zest to tomato dishes. Genovese has large (2”/5cm) uniform dark green leaves with strong basil flavour and aroma. This Italian classic is a favourite for pesto and tomato-based sauces. Pinch out growing tips to encourage bushier plants and to delay flowering.

HarvestingBegin pinching stem tips when plants are 6 inches (15cm) tall to promote leaf production. Every two weeks, cut stems just above a leaf node. Do not remove more than one third of a plant’s foliage at one time. If plants go to flower, cut them back to one-third; they may re-sprout tender leaves. To keep blooms from forming, just pinch the growing tips every week, which will encourage branching and more leaves.
StoringStore fresh, leafy stems in a jar of water (unrefrigerated) for a few days; change the water daily. To dry leaves, spread in a well-ventilated, shady area until dry and then store in airtight containers out of direct sunlight.
Maturity80 days
Height18-24” (45-60cm)
Spacing10-12” (25-30cm)
LightFull Sun
SoilRich, organic and well draining
pH Range6.0 – 7.0
WateringKeep soil moist not wet; overwatering will encourage root diseases
FertilizingBalanced fertilizer at time of planting; side-dress to encourage continued growth
Nutrients RequiredNitrogen=high, Phosphorus=moderate, Potassium=moderate

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