Do you know what is always good to have on hand in the kitchen? aromatic plants. These vegetables, apart from giving a fresh and natural touch to our environment, give off very pleasant aromas and are ideal for many culinary recipes. One of the most used aromatic herbs is basil, ideal for flavoring pizzas, pasta, salads and for making pesto. So that you can enjoy its wonderful fresh leaves recently harvested, we are going to explain how to plant basil
It is not necessary to have a garden or an orchard to grow these plants, with pots and a place with much light is usually enough. In addition, they are very easy to maintain. What more can we ask for? If you like basil and cooking with it, I recommend that you grow it yourself at home. Apart from explaining how to plant basil, we will also tell you when is the best time to carry out this task.
When is potted basil planted?
Before explaining how to plant basil, we must first be clear about when to do it in order to be successful. In general, the best time to sow this aromatic plant is in late winter or early spring. Although it is true that we could plant this vegetable a little later, it is not recommended. The sooner we plant the basil, the longer it will last and we will be able to prolong the use of its aromatic leaves. It must be said that it is an annual plant that does not survive low temperatures, so it is unlikely that it will survive autumn.
When it comes to planting basil, we must contain ourselves with the quantity. This vegetable has the ability to germinate very well and very quickly. In many cases not all planted basil is used. A more or less accurate estimate is sow two or three specimens per family and per season, more surely we do not need them. Obviously, this depends on the use we want to give it and our gastronomic tastes.
How is the basil plant planted?
Now that we know when to plant it, let’s explain how to plant basil. Usually, when sowing a vegetable, in most cases it is best to cover the seed with a little soil or substrate. In this way we give it darkness and also humidity, at least during the germination process, which is essential for it to end up sprouting. It must be said that the seeds are basically a dormant plant, which begins its germination phase as long as the temperature and humidity are adequate. However, if it lacks moisture it can irreversibly paralyze your process.
But do not worry, precisely basil is an exception. In this case, to successfully plant this plant, the seed should be exposed to direct sunlight so that it can germinate. Knowing this, we can now acquire basil seeds and get down to work. We can buy the variety that we like the most in a nursery or in garden stores.
There are types of basil with large, small and also with purple leaves. In addition, within these groups there are different varieties. With a single envelope of seed we already have more than enough for this season. The leftover seeds can be saved for the next season. Obviously, we can also buy seeds of different varieties of basil and try which one we like best. The variant with purple leaves is a good option to beautify our garden a bit.
How to plant basil step by step
Once we have acquired the seeds, it is time to sow them. Next we will explain step by step how to plant basil:
- Prepare the seedbed: It can be a tray of alveoli, a pot or a planter. In the case of a pot, it should have a diameter of at least twelve centimeters, so we will have a large enough surface so that the basil plants do not germinate too close together. In the case of using a tray of alveoli, each of them should measure between three and four centimeters.
- Add the substrate: Then it’s time to add the substrate to the seedbed and water abundantly. The most recommended is the “seedbed substrate”, but if we cannot find it, we can also use a special substrate for indoor plants.
- Distribute the seeds: As they are very small, it is best to take them with tweezers and spread them evenly over the substrate. It is best to leave a separation of approximately two centimeters between each seed.
- Water: We water again, but very carefully so that the force of the water does not end up displacing the soil and covering the seeds. Then we must keep the substrate always moist.
- Locate the seedbed: It is important that the seeds are in full sun, but at the same time protected from the wind and drafts. The germination temperature of basil seeds should never drop below fifteen degrees.
How to water the basil
If we manage to keep the soil moist and the minimum temperature, counting from the exact moment of sowing, the seeds will end up turning slightly bluish. This is when its germination begins. After a few days we will be able to observe its first leaves and its two cotyledons.
What to do after sowing?
If we have managed to get the basil seeds to germinate successfully, the time will come when we have to transplant them. This is usually about 20 or 30 days after planting, when they already have about two or three pairs of leaves. From the seedbeds, we can plant the basil in its place in the garden or in somewhat larger pots, if we want to have this aromatic plant on the terrace or in the kitchen. It is important to carry out this task carefully, trying to damage the vegetables as little as possible. We can plant the basil individually or in groups of up to three specimens.
The most recommended substrate for transplanted basil is substrate for outdoor plants or universal, mixed with normal soil. As for the pH, this aromatic plant prefers a little acid, specifically between 5,7 and 6,2.
As you can see, it is not complicated to plant basil, and to take care of it either. Personally, I love preparing tomato with mozzarella with a leaf of this delicious aromatic plant.