Basil Sweet Thai
Basil Sweet Thai or Ocimum basilicum is a cultivar with leaves that are shiny, narrow, and serrated. Ocimum basilicum seeds can be brown or black and are also known as “nutlets.” There are many Thai basil varieties, and they mix well, so do play plant matchmaker. Check your basil plants frequently for flowers, and if you see any, pinch them off right away. If the flower stems are too woody to pinch (often the case with Thai basil), cut them off with shears. A plant allowed to flower will soon go to seed, stop growing, and die, so be vigilant about removing flowers.
To grow a Thai basil perennial from a cutting, do the following:
- Take a 4-inch section of the stem before it blooms
- Take off the leaves from the bottom part of the stem
- Put the stem in a small container with enough water
- Place the container near a window
- Change the water daily
- When roots emerge, move the basil to a small pot
Give Ocimum basilicum sandy, well-drained soil with 7 pH and at least 6 hours of sun each day. Space more plants at least 1 foot apart for small varieties and up to 3 feet for large ones. That is for air movement, which is vital to help Thai basil stay healthy; otherwise, they will make each other sick.
- Basil does well with asparagus and helps tomatoes overcome pest insects and disease while improving the growth and flavor of both. It is best to grow the shorter basil plants alongside or parallel to the tomato plants instead of among them in their shade.
- Peppers – both sweet and hot – like basil alongside them, as do beans, beets, cabbage, and eggplant. Herbs that like basil nearby are oregano and chamomile.
- Basil repels mosquitoes and most flies, so keep a couple of planted pots near doorways and entrances.
- Common rue and sage are antagonistic to basil, so don’t plant them near each other.
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