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Vegetables
Basil

Featured Recipes: Gardening Tips:
Pesto: Not Just For Pasta
Pesto sauce made with homemade basil is great on spaghetti, but have you ever tried freezing it and then stuffing pieces of it under the skin of a chicken before roasting? Use it in vinaigrette, spread it on a tomato sandwich or on a burger instead of mustard. Put it in omelets, in soups, in Thai curries, in potato salad. Spread it on swordfish steaks before you put them on the grill.



Gardeners are eager to enjoy Basil’s intensely aromatic leaves, so they generally seed too early, with poor results. This heavenly herb originated in Africa and can't handle life outdoors until evenings are warm. To prevent 'damping off', use good-quality starter mix, provide ventilation and water lightly until established. Direct-sow when soil and weather are reliably warm after all danger of frost has passed. Basil prefers rich soil; keep plants producing lushly by frequent trimming and fertilizing. Annual. (OP.)

Average seed life: 3 years

     
#6000 Sweet Broadleaf Basil
This tried-and-true basil is the backbone of Italian cuisine. This traditional, 18" tall, wide-leaf type is imported straight from our favorite seedsmen in Italy. Grow lots for sauces, garnishes, salads and heavenly pesto! Freeze pesto for winter, when your meals could use some zip, adding sun-dried tomatoes or chiles for variety. (OP.)

Check out our Herb Garden 101 On our Collections' Page

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.05

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#6010 Genovese Basil
This larger-leaved, (2” or more) Italian basil has spicy-fragrant leaves. It is powerfully aromatic and classically popular for pesto made with pine nuts, parmesan, olive oil and garlic! The sturdy plants grow to 24 tall. Allow 10” between plants to produce a heavy crop. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.25

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#6020 Lemon Basil
Small leaves with a pungent, lemony scent adorn compact, mounding plants growing up to 24” tall. It makes an unusual spicy herb vinegar or may be dried in sachets for your closets. Lemon basil pesto is outstanding: use 1/3 regular basil to 2/3 lemon basil. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.25

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#6030 Purple Sweet Basil
Purple-red leaves on 18", bushy plants create attractive contrast in both salads and in the garden. Purple Sweet has a spicy note: create delicious, purple-tinted basil vinegar: wash and dry leaves, pack in a jar and add white wine vinegar. Cap and store in a cool place for one to two weeks. Remove basil and strain. This purple elixir is marvelous in marinades, smashing in salads. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.10

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#6035 Round Midnight Purple Basil
New! These 1′-tall, bushy little plants have fragrant, dark, burgundy-purple leaves with a silvery shimmer. They’re stunning planted in an edible border with curly Parsley, Calendula and Nasturtiums, or in a container with colorful annuals. Both the leaves and pale pink flowers are pretty and tasty in tossed salads, spring rolls and edible bouquets. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.45

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#6040 Siam Queen Thai Basil
With purple-on-reverse leaves and strong purple stems, this award-winner has lovely pink blossoms which lure beneficial insects to enjoy their fragrance! The pungently licorice/clove scented leaves proliferate on 18", sturdy plants. Vietnamese cooks use this variety to garnish soup made with rice noodles and bean sprouts as well as in pungent Thai curries. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.35

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#6050 Lime Basil
A tropical combination of zesty lime and sweet basil, Lime Basil is loved by innovative cooks who add its mild flavor to grilled fish, seafood salad, pasta, garden salads and poultry dishes. It is also a lovely addition to marinades, vinegars or jellies. Perfumed, 2', light green leaves grow on compact, mounding plants that reach to about 12" tall. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.35

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#6060 Mexican Spice Basil
Also known as Cinnamon Basil, it is the most ornamental variety of the basil family. A spicy-scented, 18", compact plant similar in habit to regular sweet basil, it has dark green, glossy foliage and lavender flowers. Its highly aromatic leaves have a complex, warm cinnamon flavor and are prized in Mediterranean soups, sauces and salads (as well as American pumpkin and sweet potato pies). (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.25

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#6065 Fino Verde little-Leafed Basil
Miniature Fino Verde has the characteristic spicy-sweet Basil taste and is terrific since it doesn’t need to be sliced or cut. Just wash and toss it whole into salads, soups or sauces. Growing from 8” to 12” tall, its compact, rounded mounds of light green teensy-weensy leaves are pretty, tasty and perfect for container growing outside or inside under lights. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.25

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#6080 Napolitano Mammoth-Leafed Basil
Napolitano has absolutely huge, light green, crinkled, savoyed leaves. Richly flavored, these mammoth leaves are perfect for serious pesto makers: picking these huge leaves makes annual pesto production a snap! Layer these giant basil leaves on top of pounded boneless chicken breasts; cover them with soft herbed or goat cheese and sliced, roasted red bell peppers; and roll them up like little jelly rolls. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and grated Parmesan and bake at 350 F for about 35 minutes (seam side down) with an inch of chicken broth in the bottom of the baking dish. Serve with marinara sauce and a side of pasta. (OP.)

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.15

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#6090 Marseillais Dwarf Basil
Heralded as the best flavored variety ever, this compact French newcomer has proportionately large leaves with a wonderfully intense, essence-of-basil flavor. Perfect for containers, it is a must-grow for basil affectionados. (OP.) Height: 12”.

Packet of 300 Seeds / $3.25

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#9610 The Culinary Basil Garden
  • Genovese Basil (about 300 seeds)
  • Fino Verde Little-Leafed Basil (about 300 seeds)
  • Lemon Basil (about 300 seeds)
  • Lime Basil (about 300 seeds)
  • Napoitano Mammoth-Leafed Basil (about 300 seeds)
  • Round Midnight Purple Basil (about 300 seeds)
  • Siam Queen Thai Basil (about 300 seeds)

    Packet of 2100 Seeds / $20.75

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