Basil is a bit like the star of summer in our gardens. Indispensable in many recipes, growing it requires a minimum of know-how.
Basil is the essential aromatic plant that smells of summer and the South. In a pot or in the ground, it is not so difficult to grow, but a few tips will be welcome to ensure better longevity and better productivity for your plant.
Which basil to choose?
There are many varieties of basil. Choose yours according to your tastes, but also your uses. For example, a lemony basil or a Thai basil will not have the same flavor as a basil with large or small leaves, which are more classic in southern cuisine.
If you opt for a pot culture, small-leaved basil seems particularly suitable, indicates the gardening blog of the World. If you want to kill two birds with one stone and adorn your garden with a basil, the purple-leaved one offers a nice color contrast.
When and where to plant it?
Now is the perfect time. Indeed, basil is a plant that particularly fears the cold. A frost could be fatal. It is better to wait until the good weather is permanently installed to plant your basil.
As for its ideal location, it will particularly appreciate exposure to partial shade, especially in the south of France, where the heat, which basil resists well, is particularly strong.
How to water it?
While basil likes heat, it must also be watered regularly. But to the right extent. As indicated by the specialized site Rustica, the soil in which the basil is planted must have time to dry out between two waterings.
Because basil fears excess water, which could lead to rotting of the foot. The ideal would be watering every 15 days according to Rustica. In addition, if you opt for a basil in the ground, consider mulching the soil, to keep it fresh.
Maintain it and harvest it
To optimize the life of your basil, it is advisable to top it. That is to say, to remove the top that appears between the last leaves, and which could give rise to flowers. Without this part, the plant will not have to concentrate its energy in flowering and therefore will concentrate on its foliage.
For this operation, as for harvesting the leaves, it is best to do it by hand, without using scissors. To do this, pinch the part to be cut between your fingernails to cut it.
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