Friday, April 19, 2013

Basil is hard to grow right?

A couple years in a row I purchased basil seedlings from a nursery.  They did not do so well.  Black leaves, refusing to grow, overtaken by weeds and eventually forgotten.


Basil must be hard to grow right?

Last year I decided to grow basil from seed, starting indoors, hoping that perhaps it might work better.


I planted a lot of seeds as I expected that most would die.  They did not.  Well that's okay, I was sure some would not make it through the transition to the outdoors.

wrong again.


By mid-summer I was giving away garbage bags full of basil to a co-worker who loves making pesto.

and then I made pesto...  and little frozen basil cubes...  and a crap load of pasta.

I planted basil seeds again this year...  maybe just a few extra in case some die .....


Because we know basil is hard to grow right?

I have now potted up some 36 basil seedlings and I still have another flat to go.



Next year would someone please remind me that basil is NOT hard to grow at all.

and would anyone like a few extra seedlings?

38 comments:

  1. You Grow Girl: ha, ha..that's a truck load of basil you got there..I buy one plant from one of the stores in town and shamed to say, hardly use any of it..so put some in ice cube trays, freeze it and bag it..Have I used it yet, no!..I'm not great at using herbs enough..Our town and town north of here have had so much rain, flooding and washed out roads, the mayors of both towns have declared a state of emergency..yet my crocus, miniature iris and other little purple flowers are up..hope your weather is nicer..when I move out there, I'll call you in the spring.."dont' PLANT so much basil" :)...happy gardening Lannie

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    1. Looking forward to seeing you Lannie! the weather is greatly improved here, still some not great days but I'm getting outside regularly now and bulbs are beginning to appear. I think I've completely altered our diet with how much basil I've grown. I never used to eat pesto but I can't bear to throw this stuff away so I've learned to make pesto and put basil in as many dishes as I can sneak it into.

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  2. Maybe you need to open a pesto factory. :o) I love how easy basil is to grow. It always makes me feel successful.

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    1. Now that I've got the hang of it I'm kinda loving it too :) and I have a new found appreciation for pesto. I think the trick for me is adding walnuts instead of pinenuts.

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  3. Ha! Basil is not easy to grow in my garden. Very short lived because it doesn't seem to like the heat that much. I have to grow it in early spring and again in fall.

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    1. Isn't that funny, it grew in the hottest spots of my garden last year. seemed to love it (although I was constantly cutting back the flowers to keep it in check)

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  4. Lol, your pesto-loving friends must love you:) I haven't even bothered starting basil indoors--I plant the seeds directly in a big pot outside and they've done well. I must admit I've never made any pesto with the basil, though; I plant a blend from Renee's Garden that I think are pretty ornamentals.

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    1. I wish I could start them outside - would be less work - but I find the seedlings take a long time to get started here and our summers just aren't long enough so starting indoors has worked well for me. and yes, my coworker is very happy. She was just asking the other day if I was going to have basil again this year :)

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  5. Wow, now that's a lot of basil...lol.

    It is so simple to grow that it makes me wonder why we always insist on buying starters?

    Jen

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    1. I don't know about anyone else but I really didn't realize how easy this would be to grow from seed. mind you, I still buy some starters out of laziness. marigolds, peppers, rosemary are always on my must buy list.

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  6. That's funny!!! Yes, I have always had a hard time growing basil...but this year, it at least, has germinated. So maybe I will get lucky. We adore basil and never have enough! You grow girl )))

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    1. Brenda I know you can grow anything so I'm shocked basil is eluding you. I think there's just something to be said for different garden conditions. I'm in such an open sunny location, growing things now that I could never have done before.

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  7. I have never grown herbs from seed, always bought them - mainly because I have no room for seedlings indoors, with only one windowsill which is packed with my orchids. But maybe I will try next year, sowing them directly outdoors, depends what kind of spring we get, this year it definitely would not have been possible, way too late spring I think.

    By the way, I have sown salad, radish and beetroot today, outside in containers, hoping we don't get any more night frost :-)

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    1. There are other herbs I purchase too, some of them I find just too much work to bother with and it's so easy to buy a plug or two when you only want just a bit.

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  8. I wish I could take some off your hands! I think I'll keep quiet about how hard it is to grow basil for just a while longer:) Then I'll come knockin'...

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    1. LOL, if you put in a garden Jane just ask, I always have extra seedlings it seems.

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  9. This is my first year for growing basil from seeds. So far so good...I noticed a few sprouts in the cold frame. I am glad to hear that basil is easy to grow!

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    1. Jennifer, you'll really enjoy having fresh basil. Despite my tendency to overdo things it's a real treat to gather fresh herbs for cooking.

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  10. Ha! As I read this post, Jim was making dinner with fresh basil nearby and the smell was divine. Of course it is supermarket basil, and nothing compared to what I will be harvesting soon, when my own home-grown spicy basil is ready. As you know now, it is easy-easy to grow : )

    And wonderful in the kitchen.

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    1. Laurrie, I was amazed even when transplanting the tiny seedlings just how powerful the smell was. I'm tempted to just throw them into my food now.

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  11. This is my first year trying basil, and a lot of other veg from seed too - I just loaded up the dining room table with trays and potting mix to get things started - I hope I have as much luck as you have!

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    1. Best of luck Brenda, I'm sure you'll have lots of plants soon enough. Seed starting can be addictive!

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  12. Ha ha this made me smile. I do better some years than others but have never planted it outside the UK is just not warm enough I don't think.

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    1. Elaine, I've been so lucky with this garden. We are in an open sunny spot and herbs do just wonderfully here. Just wish I could overwinter more but alas we're too cold for that.

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  13. As long as I remember not to put it out too early, the main thing is to keep it from bolting - and, yes, using it all.

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    1. tell me about it!! I spent an awful lot of time cutting off flowers last year, although I'm considering letting some of this year's batch go to seed.

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  14. Easy to grow, just likes heat! :) Trying lime basil this year to see how different it is from Genovese basil.

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    1. good for you, I tend to stay with the tried and true flavour. I should learn to experiment a little more.

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  15. haha - I've never tried to grow it, but I'll keep that in mind if I ever decided to, and try not to plant too many! Smart of you to make pesto!

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    1. actually I'm not so smart, my colleague suggested I try pesto. I was a bit resistant as I'm not keen on store bought pesto but the recipe she gave me is really addictive.

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  16. This makes me smile ... another gardener who plants more basil than they can use! My kids grew up eating home-made pesto from home-grown basil. Now they are addicted to it and, as adults, wait for basil season. One of these days I'll have to get them growing their own basil but, for now, I'm happy to start much more from seed than I can use and share it with others.

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    1. One of these years I'll learn to cut back :) but then I might just get addicted to pesto myself

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  17. I always wish I had the patience for starting seeds. You would think I would but hey, it just isn't fast enough for me. ha... In answer to your question about those little yellow daffs in my garden (on my post). They are indeed some type of daffodil. They have been in that spot for some time. I need to thin them. Sorry but I looked for the tag for a name to tell you but couldn't find one.

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    1. thanks for looking Lisa! such a sweet little bloom, I'll have to keep an eye out in the catalogues come fall

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  18. That really made me smile, as although I don't have quite your quantities the same has happened to me this year. And I somehow seem to have 24 Ammi majus seedlings. I know I have lots of bare patches to fill, and I love umbellifers, but 24?! But you see I always fail with ammi...

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    1. we always fall into the trap don't we? - maybe they won't all start, or maybe some seedlings will die.. I can never think of throwing out perfectly good seedlings too. some space will simply have to be found for the basil

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  19. I let my basil go to seed every year and the seedlings come up in the pot from the year before. Easy doesn't even come close!

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  20. LOL. I haven't planted any basil yet, I'll take all your extra seedlings...:)

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