One of the easiest ways to give additional flavor to your home-cooked meals is definitely by adding some fresh basil. Especially if you are cooking something Italian. Can you imagine some delicious spaghetti with pesto made without basil?
You can find AeroGarden Basil Seed Pods HERE.
If you want to make the most of your basil plant, and have a healthy and ready to harvest all year-long plant, you are going to have to cut it every once in a while. You can do this when you want to prune your basil plant for the most optimum growth or when you want to use it in one of your recipes.
How to grow Basil in AeroGarden?
The most important thing to take into account is that you have to cut or trim your basil early. That is the key to keep getting new, fresh basil throughout the whole season. Cutting or trimming will make your basil plant grow more stems. When you cut one stem, two new ones should grow back.
By doing this, you are forcing the plant to invest most of its energy to producing new stems with leaves.
So now, that we have made it clear, why you should do it, let’s move on to when you should do it.
When it comes to cutting your basil, 6 is the magic number. Why 6? Because your basil plant should have at least 6 leaves or has to be at least 6 inches of height before you cut it. But make sure that you do it at the beginning of the season.
After the first cutting, you can cut your basil on a two to three-week basis until the end of the season.
How to cut basil in aerogarden?
When your basil plant is big enough for cutting, you should always cut it on the top. Start from the highest part of your plant and move down until you find new, small leaves growing out. Cut right above those new leaves. You can use both gardening shears or scissors because basil is one of the softer plants.
If there are any flower blossoms on your plant, cut them. This will encourage growth significantly.
You should always leave a couple of sets of bigger leaves on the bottom of your basil plant because they play a huge role in your plant’s growth. They concert the energy that the plant gets from the sun into an energy filled with vitamin D.
When you are cutting your basil make sure to touch the leaves gently with your hands or even better-do not use your hands at all. If you apply just a little bit more force to it than necessary, your basil will get bruised.
Now if you have successfully grown your basil seed pods in your aerogarden, you are ready to harvest them.
How to harvest basil?
Well, this is the best thing about a basil plant. You can harvest it whenever you need it, just make sure that the leaves that you are harvesting are big enough. Like I have said before, it is really important to leave some big leaves on the bottom of the plant, to make sure that it absorbs enough light needed for optimal growth.
Another great thing about basil is that every time you harvest a leaf, it will be replaced by not just one, but two new leaves! That means that you should harvest your basil on a regular basis just to get the most out of it. Basil is an important ingredient in Italian recipes.
Now there are some more tips you should know to get better results every time. Those tips are different, based on the amount of basil that you will be harvesting.
Tip for a small harvest:
Pick only a few of the leaves. Do not cut off a whole stem, unless your stem is big enough for cutting. Also, make sure to remove the branch tips. This will help the plant to fill out.
Tip for a larger harvest:
Whenever you are working with a basil plant-either cutting, trimming or harvesting it, you should always start from the top and move down! When you have enough basil, cut the stem right above your first pair on small leaves that you have left on. That way you will ensure the plant to grow back as quickly as possible.
Tip for a final harvest:
When you decide to replace your basil with something new, or maybe the season is over for the plant, that is when you do the final cut. Cut all the stems that the plant has and pick off the leaves.
And that is about it! Oh and I almost forgot-make sure to remove all dead and spotted leaves from your harvest. In the end you should only be left with fresh, green leaves.
How long do Basil seed pods last?
While the manufacturer claims that you can expect your herbs to last about 4 months, I have seen them last much longer. The most time I’ve harvested a basil plant for was about 6 months. If you add the month that it took the plant to get ready for harvest, you get the total number of 7 months, which is almost twice as long as the manufacturer claims. You have to understand that they are trying to promise less and deliver more.
How to transplant Basil?
If you want to transplant basil, then I have some good news for you. Basil is one of the easiest plants to transplant. So how do you do it? First, you are going to need some containers, pre-fertilized soil and either scissors or gardening shears.
Step 1: Prepare your containers
Fill whatever container you have with pre-fertilized soil about ¾ up. If you can, I would always suggest that you get containers/pots with holes on the bottom. This way the excess water will drain out instead of rotting the roots.
Step 2: Take the seed pods out of your Aerogarden
Be careful to pull your seed pods out by the grow baskets! If you pull the stem of your plant to get it out, it is most likely that it will get damaged. Keep in mind that basil is one of the most sensitive plants out there. Once you have your seed pod out, try removing it from the plastic grow basket. If it just won’t go, try to wiggle it around or try cutting a few roots off of it. Just make sure not to cut off too much.
Step 3: Plant your basil in your new containers
First, go make a hole in your soil. If you do not have a hole maker, that is perfectly fine. You can use your fingers. Next put the plant inside the soil and add just a bit more soil to cover the whole grow sponge and roots. Make sure that the stem and leaves are not buried in.
Step 4: Keep your soil moist
It is important that you keep the soil moist because water equals life. Also, make sure to always pour water on the soil and not on the plant itself. If you pour water on basil leaves, they will turn yellow and start going bad soon.
If you transplant your basil plant somewhere indoors, keep in mind that it needs a lot of sunlight, so a place like a window shelf is usually the best option. If you’ve decided that you want to move it outdoors, make sure that the danger of frost has already passed and that the weather forecast is looking good from this date on. Any frost whatsoever will kill your basil plant and all of your work will go to waste.
When you are done with transplanting basil or with its last harvest-you take the seed pods out, you should always clean and sanitize your AeroGarden. If you fail to do so, you risk the possibility of spreading root pathogens and bacteria which is really bad for any plants that you will plant later.
You can clean your AeroGarden with either white vinegar or chlorine bleach. Either way, you should pour your sanitizer in your water bowl, turn the pump on for 5 minutes and then pour the sanitizer out and repeat the whole process with just water.
You can grow basil indoors either in pots or in your Aerogarden if you have one. In fact, it is one of the easiest things to grow. Make sure that you harvest it regularly because the basil plant will replace every single leaf that you harvest with 2 new ones. You can expect your basil to last about 6 months or even more if you take good care of it. You can also transplant your basil plant into a container and keep it on a window shelf or outside, but make sure that the weather is warm enough to do so.
Thank you for reading this article, and if you have any questions or experiences that you would like to share with the rest of us, please feel free to drop a comment down below. Have a nice day!