Friday, August 19, 2016

Fun Experiment to Grow Sweet Basil

Sweet basil (Genovese basil) or kemangi in Indonesian, is a culinary herb I use for cooking. Last year one of my good friends from Ohio sent its seeds to me. I was so excited as several months ago for the first time I planted it. From all three small pots, all seeds grew well. As they all grew well, I could harvest their leaves and use them for cooking. The leaves may taste somewhat like anise, with a strong, pungent, often sweet smell. A perfect additional herb for spaghetti.

Cultivating sweet basil is not difficult. Besides daily watering, picking the dead leaves, and adding nutrition, I used to watch its leaves carefully. If its leaves have wilted from lack of water, it will recover if watered thoroughly and placed in a sunny location. Yellow leaves towards the bottom of the plant are an indication that the plant has been stressed; usually this means that it needs less water, or less or more fertilizer. The good thing of picking the leaves off the plant helps promote growth, largely because the plant responds by converting pairs of leaflets next to the topmost leaves into new stems.

Because I have three small pots of sweet basil and as I love giving, I was thinking to give one pot to someone who likes cooking. One lucky person who got my gift is a VA employee who cut the grass in our backyard. He went home carrying a small pot of sweet basil on his left hand with happy face. Do you want it too? Wait next year! Hahaha! (*)


Basil-Basilico-Ocimum basilicum-albahaca.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Ocimum
Species: O. basilicum
Binomial name
Ocimum basilicum
Source: Wikipedia