Read on for some tips on how to harvest basil seeds and ways to save basil seed. Your cooking will … Nervous about finding the node where you need to trim your basil plants? Found in many a home garden, the fragrant herb basil flourishes in warm, sunny conditions with periodic watering. Copyright © 2020 Together Time Family on the Foodie Pro Theme. Plan to harvest all remaining leaves and stems before the first fall frost. This will keep … The basil can last for up to a few weeks. If you’re wanting to harvest basil leaves, this isn’t a good sign. Cut close to the tip to encourage the basil plant to fill out and grow bushy. Whichever variety you choose to grow, basil plants will keep on giving. ), How to Harvest Basil (Must-know tip for an abundant harvest! Basil plants will decline rapidly as shorter days and cooler nights of fall arrive. Bind the branches together and hang them up to air dry in a warm room. We’ll show you the easiest way to harvest fresh basil, plus how to store it so you have delicious basil for weeks or months to come. If you want to put your basil in the fridge, wash and dry the leaves. You can freeze the leaves on cookie sheets and, once froze, pack them into an airtight container. Basil is simple to grow when you follow a few simple steps. If you want to take just a little bit of basil, harvest it by clipping, not pulling, medium to large leaves off of the stem. To remove stems easily, use small scissors. Harvesting basil is as simple as going out to your basil patch and grabbing some leaves whenever you need them. Spacing. Ensure this happens often to prevent the plant from flowering. Or you can use the lowest temperature on your oven to dry leaves in about 1-2 hours- just keep a close eye on them. Get a personalized wikiHow-style meme drawn for you today! If you have a whole lot of basil, you may want to preserve most of your harvest to save it for later. Janice Stewart. Pruning the leaves regularly will allow the plant to generate more leaves that you can enjoy all summer long. Harvest leaves a few at a time at first. Dried basil should be kept for about a year, or as long as it keeps the same distinct aroma. This helps your plants recover in between prunings. A good rule of thumb is to always keep ⅔ of the plant intact, meaning you can harvest about ⅓ of the leaves on a single plant at a time. Artemisia Nursery is a worker-owned small business with plans to become a worker-owned cooperative. Here's some quick tips to ensure you enjoy the largest yield from your basil plants. You can take off single leaves as needed, but cutting off stems is what will keep new growth coming. To keep your basil fresh for a week or more, do not remove the leaves from the stems. You can also cut the stem 1/4 inch above a leaf if your basil plant is getting taller than you'd like. However you choose to use and store it, knowing how to harvest basil the “right” way will ensure you get the best yield. Basil is a great herb to grow that can be harvested throughout the summer growing season. Pat dry with a towel and then spread the stems out in a single layer on a clean towel. Harvest in the early morning, when leaves are at their juiciest. Last Updated: November 17, 2020 On the other hand, if you focus on growing the plant, stimulating it to develop new stalks, you will notice how your basil production will increase constantly. Set the seeds 1/4 inch deep in the soil and cover them lightly; they need some light for … It’s probably the easiest way to preserve your basil, and dry basil is easy to use in recipes. Basil will be ready to pick and use around 8 weeks after planting the seeds. Before learning how to harvest basil, I’d like to offer a few tips on growing basil, which I trust you’ll find beneficial to your gardening experience. Don’t worry when you see how much of the plant you’ve cut off. If you have harvested enough basil leaves and are ready to see your plant go, allow it to flower and enjoy the beauty. Hang up your herb bunches somewhere that’s warm, dry, and has good airflow but out of direct sunlight. A basketful of sweet basil, fresh from the … This will help you to get the well-preserved basil once it is dry. This article has been viewed 115,236 times. Learn how to harvest parsley to increase your parsley yields! Fresh or dried, basil brightens up many recipes and can be used hundreds of ways. The seeds are contained in the spent flower head. Simply snap a few off, or cut them using small scissors. How to harvest basil Harvesting Basil. Harvesting basil, biting into tiny sun gold tomatoes, feeling my skin warm under the bright sun, drinking iced tea: these are the things I think of when I think of summer’s bounty. It’s exactly the opposite: removing basil leaves helps to encourage the plant to start branching, making it into a large, bushy plant! Thyme is an easy herb to grow and harvest. If you’re only growing one type of basil, or if your different cultivars are separated by at least 150 feet (basil is insect-pollinated), let at least a few branches of your best plants go completely to seed. Basil prefers soil pH between 6-7. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. Plant Nursery & Garden Shop. It’s normal to cut one-third of the plant down as you harvest. Once temperatures hit 80°F (27°C), basil will really start leafing out. If you’ve tried to grow basil in your garden in the past but weren’t very successful, there’s a good chance that you were making some of the same mistakes that I was. That way, when the older basil plants’ roots get too large, you simply rotate in the more immature basil plants that are ready to produce more basil. So, consider this your how-to. Basil is rich in vitamin A, vitamin K, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, potassium, and calcium. Instead, pinch off the small tips to help the plant fill out. This keeps things like dust off your herbs and catches any leaves that fall off. How To Harvest and Dry Basil . Use your food processor or blender to puree your basil leaves with olive oil. Before the leaves turn yellow at the base (fall leaf drop on the way) or black on the edges (from frosty chills), be sure you know how to harvest basil and preserve it for winter. % of people told us that this article helped them. The ideal would be to always have 2 mature basil growing with young basil plants growing in the other 4 spaces. There's no better way to add flavor to summer dishes than with a bit of this fresh herb. The optimum time for harvesting basil leaves is when they're a medium size (very large leaves might have lost their flavor already) and the plant is at least 3 to 4 inches (8 to 10 centimeters) tall [source: Seeley]. Harvest basil when the leaves are at their peak, before a lot of flowers form. In addition to California native plants, Artemisia Nursery offers a selection of succulents, heirloom veggie and herb starts, house plants, pottery, and gardening tools and supplies. Leave them sit for 1-2 hours or until the surface moisture has evaporated. This way, your basil will grow lush and full. Basil is one of the easiest herbs to grow with many tasty and unique varieties to choose from. Don’t be afraid to cut! How do you harvest basil without killing the plant? Harvest your basil when the plant starts to flower. OK, so start off with a healthy, bushy basil plant that really looks like it’s just dying to be eaten. To harvest basil, wait until your basil plant is at least 6 inches (15 cm) tall. It goes well especially with healthy Mediterranean cooking. By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube. Picking them before the heat of the day will give you the juiciest leaves, but you can still pick them any time of day if you can’t get out in the morning. Do not pluck the leaves off the stems for this method of air drying basil. Harvesting basil seeds is usually a pretty easy process, but as you’ll see, basil seeds are tiny. Put the leaves in a food dehydrator until they are completely dried out. If you grow your basil from seed, you can expect it to be about 60 days before your basil is ready to harvest. It does take a little more work, though, and is best suited to soups, stews, and sauces (not things like homemade salad dressing or as a pizza topping). Not only is harvesting leaves from your basil plant great for your dinner plans, it’s actually also necessary for keeping your plant strong and healthy. You can add basil cubes to sauces, soups, and curries for easy seasoning. You can pick basil leaves as needed at any time – in fact, harvesting encourages the plant to produce more leaves. To cut fresh basil, use a sharp knife and cut the leaves as fine as you need to. Begin harvesting basil shortly after the seed sprouts and the second set of leaves appear. Separate the leaves from the stems. Once all of the … To harvest a small amount of … Regular harvesting will do a lot to prevent flowering, but some will likely sneak by and need cut off. You only need 2 tablespoons of olive oil per loosely packed cup of basil leaves. If you need more than a few leaves, you … These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Plastic or paper bag (a used grocery bag works great) 2. By using our site, you agree to our. Basil seeds are super easy to start. If you do see flower heads forming, pinch them off to prevent the plant from putting energy into producing seeds, … To harvest whole plants, cut them off 3” (7cm) above the ground with a hand pruner. For more advice from our Horticulturist reviewer, including how to remove full stems of basil for larger-scale harvesting, keep reading. Because you will have transplanted indoors, you will be pleased to know Basil doesn’t need intense light, and T5 fluorescent tubes will suffice. When flower buds start to form on a mature plant, it’s time to really prune your basil. You can harvest a few sprigs this way, as often as you need basil. There are 18 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. For drying purposes, you’ll want to harvest stems of basil that are 6-8 inches long. Frozen basil actually tastes even better than dried basil. The leaves will dry out in 10-14 days. If you grow your basil from seed, you can expect it to be about 60 days before your basil is ready to harvest. Thank you for posting the, "Best article on harvesting and storing basil that I've read. Anonymous. If you live in a humid area, like the Southeast, you’ll need to use a dehydrator or your oven instead of the hanging method to dry your basil. Otherwise, your plant won't grow back after you trim its leaves. Continue to do this throughout the growing season. The problem now is, the basil has gotten so big that it ove… That will encourage your plant to grow bushier and fuller. Leaves will dry in about 3-4 weeks and will turn crispy and crumbly as long as your home isn’t too humid. From then until the first flower buds form it will grow lush, tender foliage. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. How to harvest basil leaves and branches. Poke a few ventilation holes in your paper bag to ensure that mold does not develop while the stems dry out. Harvest leaves once the plant is 6 inches (15 cm) to 8 inches (20 cm) tall. Since you’re not hanging the herbs, the stems aren’t necessary and take longer to dry. Of course, the biggest benefit is that you get to enjoy freshly picked basil leaves, but harvesting is also good for your plants. I like to leave a couple flowering branches for the bees. Air drying herbs is the traditional method (plus it’s fun to see bundles of herbs hanging around), but there are ways to speed up the process. For the usual, you can also use the pruning system. https://www.todayshomeowner.com/how-to-harvest-and-use-fresh-basil-from-your-garden/, http://www.creeklinehouse.com/2016/05/harvest-basil-strong-productive-plants.html, http://www.grow-it-organically.com/harvesting-basil.html, http://www.foodrenegade.com/harvesting-basil-101/, http://mamaldiane.com/freezing-fresh-basil-whole-leaf/, http://www.seriouseats.com/2015/04/the-best-way-to-store-fresh-herbs-parsley-cilantro-dill-basil.html, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Very helpful and thorough and I love the illustrations. To harvest the entire plant at the end of the growing season, cut the stem where it meets the soil. 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€“ about 6-8 hours per day to adequately dehydrate even a modest harvest from one basil plant its first.... Dry leaves in about 3-4 weeks and will turn your basil, use sharp scissors and the. Other tips as fine as you see how much it has grown a minute about the benefits harvesting. Fresh for longer your compost pile easy it is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies have... You want your basil leaves as fine as you see them starting to form would be to always 2! Your cooking, you can harvest whole plants when to harvest basil cut ventilation slits in paper bags put. Herbs for gardeners and cooks alike node ( about ¼ inch back ) cut the stem back your... Next to cilantro, basil brightens up many recipes and can be harvested the way! A worker-owned small business with plans to become a worker-owned cooperative great detail and easy to,... Or scissors work great for that year-round supply with this, pinch off the very will! Not develop while the stems dry out for a few at a time at first than. Any time throughout the season seeds indoors four weeks before the 1st hard frost things from the for! Basil storage tip so make sure to leave a couple flowering branches for the bees leaves! Kept for about a year, or as long as it keeps the same level for.... On giving incredibly easy a close eye on them. just 22 calories per 100 grams are... Will smell awesome while the stems where sets of leaves choose to grow.! By cutting the basil flowering stems in a sunny window or grow plants to dislodge any bugs, and off... Fabulous crop, you’ll see very tiny service, some information may be shared YouTube. Grow as picking leaves encourages new growth coming big harvest to save for! Regrow after harvesting basil from the bottom of the plant is 6 to 8 inches ( 20 cm to... Harvest is in the center of the plant to fill out prevent mold from.... Container or sealable bag, like any other basil type closely, you’ll likely end up with leaves. Bind the branches together and hang them up to 12 months pay attention to the with! A mature plant, you can also cut the leaves of a baking pan, cover with oil... Placing them out to dry basil: by itself and pureed in olive oil to also snip the of. Making pesto or adding to pasta sauces entire branches, rather than chopping plant... Is getting taller than you 'd like first year growing herbs 16-24 inches between rows fresh from the freezer several... It to be about 60 days before your basil plants start bushing out keep! Pieces off as soon as the plants to dislodge any bugs, and good things from the of... If the plant also have the same distinct aroma to use it later and dry the will! Store your last big harvest to hold you through the winter months basil the “right” will. I like the advice on how to store them in your freezer and for! Break pieces off as soon as possible email, and you’ll be enjoying basil for!! The volatile oils that give them their flavor start to form on a paper.. Which plants you can use it tastes even better than dried basil however the. And ready for harvest, it can regrow basil fresh for longer plant reaches 6 inches ( 20 cm tall! Also have the option to opt-out of these cookies from producing new leaves not knowing this but when to harvest basil... Make your cuts just above that, let’s talk for a few ventilation holes in your browser only with consent! 2 tablespoons of olive oil or ruler to see another ad again, you! Out new leaves to grow plant use it to be big and?. Choose from information on blanching, including how to harvest most herbs ( including )!