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Old 06-14-2018, 09:49 PM   #1
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Basil Plants

For Memorial Day dinner, I made a dish that called for basil. Shopping for the ingredients a few days before the holiday, I noticed those little clear plastic clamshell containers of cut basil were $3.69 each and I needed two. I was kinda put off by the price until SO noticed potted basil plants at 2 for $4. so I bought two plants, saving a few bucks.

After harvesting the basil for our holiday dinner, SO planted the two plants in her garden.

Well, these plants are the gift that keeps on giving. Tonight we harvested more basil for dinner. If we can keep the critters away, I may be able to make a batch of pesto later this summer.
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Old 06-14-2018, 11:50 PM   #2
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Oooohh, I love fresh basil! I don't usually have any critter problems with it. Are you expecting something in particular to go after it?
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Old 06-15-2018, 12:38 AM   #3
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I've done the same Andy. Those plants are a bargain for sure. We plant them also but they look pretty pitiful after a while. No harm done though, they're still a good buy for a few basil recipes.
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Old 06-15-2018, 04:50 AM   #4
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I've had some basil in the back corner of the yard for the last few years. I recently stumbled across some youtube videos on how to prune basil plants for maximum production. I've found that they die off well before the first frost, presumably because they require longer daylight hours (but that's a guess on my part).
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Old 06-15-2018, 07:52 AM   #5
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I find that every time I buy the live basil plants, I never have any left to plant! It’s also problematic to grow basil here in the desert. Even indoors, Basil needs access to direct sunlight, and the little shelf in my kitchen window gets nearly as hot as it is outside. Also, I eat her use a lot basil, or very little.

Bottom line: I’m a terrible gardener. I don’t have a brown thumb, I have a black thumb!
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Old 06-15-2018, 08:46 AM   #6
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I had 12 basil transplants to put in the garden. I trimmed them all back, so they grow bushier, washed the trimmings. Last week the garlic scapes started on our garlic garden, so we trimmed those too. Then I made a garlic scape/basil/oil/walnut/lemon/S pesto to eat over vegetables (and pasta). I put the extra in 4 oz jars and froze it for future use.
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Old 06-15-2018, 09:00 AM   #7
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Oooohh, I love fresh basil! I don't usually have any critter problems with it. Are you expecting something in particular to go after it?
When SO first started her garden, we planted food plants such as tomato, pepper, basil, beans, etc. She gave up because she ended up feeding the critters who ate the plants before we harvested. There is a perennial thyme plant in the garden that none of the critters seem to be interested in.

Around here we are host to squirrels, chipmunks, ducks, turkeys, foxes, deer and birds.
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Old 06-15-2018, 09:14 AM   #8
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I see. I'm in a more urban area - no ducks, turkeys, foxes or deer here. Squirrels and chipmunks don't seem interested in the garden. I think my cats help keep the birds away. We did have a turtle go after low-hanging tomatoes once I decided to share.
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Old 06-15-2018, 10:13 AM   #9
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Two basil plants produce more basil than we can use. Grown in a container...partial sun, watered well At summer's end over 2 feet tall.
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Old 06-15-2018, 11:00 AM   #10
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My basil at the Cape is not doing well at all. The basil in Boston is better. Cant figure that out.

Hoping that the woodchuck doesn't mow it down ….
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Old 06-15-2018, 11:02 AM   #11
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I see. I'm in a more urban area - no ducks, turkeys, foxes or deer here. Squirrels and chipmunks don't seem interested in the garden. I think my cats help keep the birds away. We did have a turtle go after low-hanging tomatoes once I decided to share.
I live right in Boston and we have turkeys and deer and the damn WOODCHUCK who eats al of our gardens …

Also, the squirrels love my tomatoes ….
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Old 06-15-2018, 11:06 AM   #12
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I live right in Boston and we have turkeys and deer and the damn WOODCHUCK who eats al of our gardens …

Also, the squirrels love my tomatoes ….
Oh, I forgot the occasional woodchuck and moles.
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Old 06-15-2018, 11:18 AM   #13
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Planting you own is the way to go.
Several years ago I build a cedar planter for my wife, 8 inches wide by about 6 feet long, for herbs. She has 4 or 5 different herbs growing in that.
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Old 06-15-2018, 11:32 AM   #14
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If you keep pinching out the small new leaf cluster at the top of each stem/shoot before the little white flowers appear the plant won’t go to seed. They will instead shoot new stems/shoots out and the plant will get bushier.
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Old 06-15-2018, 11:35 AM   #15
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I have a good-sized herb garden in the middle of the backyard with lots of different herbs. I put the basil in the vegetable garden with the tomatoes - I find they need more water than the others .
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Old 06-15-2018, 12:04 PM   #16
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My biggest issue with basil is I get way more than I need. And they go to seed quickly. I do pinch off the flowers, but they just return.

They need daily watering as well. If they are in containers.
Best part is they are so easy to propagate. Just take a stem with a few leaves on it and put it in water. Within one week you will start to see roots.


So I allow those outside to seed then die and just replenish with newly grown plants all summer long.
BTW. They are water hogs and best you keep a close eye on them if they are in containers.


I like the idea above regrading the trough. Maybe I should build something like that.
I have my plants in 3 gallon containers and they are too small.
Or my plants are getting to big to fast?


Oh......We have deer (lots of deer) and all kinds of animals in our yard. They never once touched the basil.
They did try tomoto's but I guess they didn't like them?
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Old 06-15-2018, 01:20 PM   #17
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Things have gotten out of hand. SO just came home with a giant basil plant she got on clearance for $2. I may get to make that pesto after all!
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Old 06-15-2018, 01:32 PM   #18
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Things have gotten out of hand. SO just came home with a giant basil plant she got on clearance for $2. I may get to make that pesto after all!
Oh NOoooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

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Old 06-15-2018, 02:19 PM   #19
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Here it's basil season. We grow ours about half sunlight and half shade. I grow the basil in terracotto pots and water it in not touch, a little and often. My basil is growing beatifully. When the leaves are fairly ripe, but not too much, I use the first pots I planted, and I immediatly the next plant in my pots, and I have a rotation.

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Old 06-15-2018, 05:31 PM   #20
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I grow basil every year.

I do not have problems with critters eating them, but sometimes insects. The insects leave holes in the leaves, but they don't ruin the leaves -- they just have holes in them. I'm okay with that -- tastes the same.

They do like sunshine, and do need to be watered at least once a day. If you miss a watering, and they wilt, they usually bounce back, as long as you they don't get completely dry leaves.

They do go to seed at different rates, and mine this year are in a hurry. I have to pinch of the flowing pods two or three times a week.

Not the easiest herb in my garden, but worth the effort. I love basil.

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