Basil is one of the herbs that are great for home growing. This essential oil-rich plant is very unpretentious and can thrive at home all year round. Basil bushes look very decorative and also have a pleasant aroma. It is basil that is recommended for the first experiments on creating a miniature vegetable garden on the windowsill. But in order for the bush to give a good harvest, you need to learn the basic rules for growing it.
Basil bushes can be obtained in different ways - from cuttings or fresh shoots of a specimen growing in the garden, as well as using seeds. It is growing from seeds that can guarantee a good harvest when growing basil at home. Such bushes will be able to grow longer than those obtained vegetatively.
You can use any seed to grow basil on a windowsill. But individual varieties of this plant - purple and large-leaved - are distinguished by a longer development, and it will be more difficult to get a quick and abundant harvest from them. Usually, compact and small-leaved varieties are used for growing in pots. You can sow several varieties at once, similar in size to the bushes, but differing in terms of ripening. A number of varieties are specifically designed for home sowing.
In addition to the seeds, it is necessary to prepare a suitable soil and container. For basil, you need a container with a volume of at least 1-2 liters, or a box with a depth of 15 cm. In such a container, seedlings can be placed in 10 cm increments. Another important condition is the presence of drainage holes.
How to plant BASIL for seedlings
Basil seeds do not need to be processed, but they can speed up the emergence of sprouts. To do this, the seeds are soaked for 1-2 days in warm water, changing it at least once every 12 hours. This procedure will help remove the essential oil from the seed surface. After such soaking, the seeds are kept for a couple of hours in a pale solution of potassium permanganate, and then slightly dried on a napkin for easy sowing. Due to the small size of the seeds for drying, you need to use a material that does not impede their subsequent extraction - for example, paper, and not loose fabric. A toothpick will also help to simplify the process - it pokes the seeds with it when moving into the ground.
Basil requires loose soil; for its cultivation, a mixture of universal purchased land with garden land in equal proportions is suitable. Garden soil can be replaced with vermicompost by mixing it with a universal substrate (1: 4), or with a coconut substrate (1:20).
Before sowing, it is recommended to disinfect the soil by calcining (keep for 1 hour at a temperature of about 110 degrees), freezing or spilling with potassium permanganate. Such measures help protect seedlings from pests. After that, the necessary mineral fertilizers can be added to the soil.
A drainage layer about 2.5 cm thick must be laid on the bottom of the selected pot. The rest of the place is filled with soil, leaving about 3.5 cm to the edge of the container. The land is carefully leveled and then watered.
The best time to start growing basil is March. This plant loves warmth and light, and in such conditions, its young bushes will begin to develop more actively.
Basil seeds are sown, maintaining a distance of 2 cm, then covered with a centimeter layer of earth and cover the container with glass or a bag. Then the pot or box is transferred to a warm place and aired daily until sprouts appear. The seeds will not need watering, but if necessary, the soil can be gently sprayed. The timing of the emergence of seedlings varies depending on the variety and growing conditions, and on average are about 7-12 days.
With the appearance of sprouts, the film should be removed, and the excess seedlings should be thinned out or transplanted into another container. In the box between the plants, at least 10 cm should remain. If the basil grows in a pot, the number of bushes is calculated based on its diameter. Seedlings should not be crowded, but too deep capacity will make it difficult for immature plants to develop. Seedlings should be kept in a well-lit place. When the bushes grow up to at least 5 cm, it will be possible to pour a little earth into the pot to strengthen the plants.
When the basil is taken out of the "greenhouse", caring for it will consist of regular watering, loosening and compliance with the necessary growing conditions.
In the warm season, the basilica will have 6 hours of sunshine, but in winter, plantings will need additional lighting. From fall to late winter, homemade basil will also need enough sun. In order for the bushes to have enough light, artificial lighting is used, providing plantings with 12-hour daylight hours. For basil, warm white LED lamps (2700K) or phytolamps, which are kept 15-20 cm from the bushes, are suitable.
Basil prefers warmth - 20-25 degrees, low temperature leads to a loss of foliage aroma. It is especially important to protect the planting from cold drafts.
How to grow basil at home. Garden at home.
In the summer, basil is watered daily, in the morning, trying to keep the soil constantly moist, but not waterlogged. In winter, if the room becomes cooler, the number of waterings is reduced to 2 times a week.
Basil can also be sprayed, this procedure is tried to be carried out in the morning or in the evening on especially hot and dry days, using water at room temperature. The increased humidity will make the foliage juicier.
If the basil grows in a nutritious soil, top dressing can be skipped. As depletion proceeds, organic compounds, vermicompost or Agrolife preparation (1 tsp on the soil surface) are monthly introduced into the soil. Top dressing can be done after pruning. It is also recommended to loosen the soil in a pot with adult bushes periodically - this procedure will contribute to its enrichment with oxygen.
In order for the basil to form more leaves and branch better, they try to systematically cut it off, "pinching" the tops of its shoots. 5-7 weeks after the emergence of seedlings, when about 4-6 full-fledged leaves appear on the seedlings, the first crop can be removed by pinching off a couple of the top leaves from the top. When the bushes grow a little more, pinch the top of the shoot over the place where small leaves begin to form from the sinuses. This procedure is repeated every few weeks.
If basil leaves are needed only in small amounts as a seasoning, use the old side foliage for this. It is removed where it is attached to the main stem. When pruning, you should always leave at least 4 leaves at the bottom of the stem. Pruning the lower shoots will result in the development of the bush in height, which will lead to a decrease in yield. The buds that appear should also be cut off. Greens are no longer harvested from flowering bushes, so the buds are removed along with the two leaves located under them.
The convenience of the planting method described above is that there is no need for transplanting young seedlings. But the lack of space on the window does not always allow large containers for mature shrubs to be kept there, while the seedlings remain small and immature for collecting foliage. To save space, the initial seeding is carried out in temporary pots. In this capacity, any seed container is used. When the bushes grow to 5-7 cm, they are transplanted into a permanent pot or box.
In the summer or towards the end of the season, you can simply transplant a young basil bush from the garden into a pot, this will save you the hassle of growing seedlings. From such a plant, foliage begins to be harvested immediately after the final rooting, but it will begin to bloom faster, so the seedlings are considered more productive. To extend the growing season of such a bush, you will have to constantly remove flower stalks from it or form new plants by cutting cuttings from it.
Quickly and easily get a basil bush using cuttings. In this capacity, non-lignified lateral stems or tops of shoots are used, taken from an adult bush or even purchased fresh greens. They are placed in water, changing it daily. Under such conditions, the twigs should form roots in 1-2 weeks, after which they are transplanted into a pot. The harvest from such seedlings begins to be harvested within a couple of weeks after planting, but such bushes will only actively grow for about 3-4 months.
Basil is an unpretentious crop that can be grown at home throughout the year. But since this plant is of tropical origin, in order to get a harvest, it is necessary to create certain conditions for it. Therefore, before you start planting, you should figure out how to grow basil on a windowsill. For this purpose, it is advisable to use undersized varieties: Clove, Marquis, Dwarf, Yerevan, Lemon or Violet.
Topping my "hit parade", of course, green onions. Probably, at least once in his life, everyone grew it on the windowsill, even if only in childhood - out of curiosity. This is an ideal plant for a home garden: fast growing, unpretentious, useful.
As planting material you can use both onion sets (large fraction - samples), and ordinary onion-turnip. I tried both options from sevka (or small turnip), the yield, of course, is less - the bulb is depleted faster. But the feather - for my taste - is softer and more tender. In addition, the small onion takes up less space when planting. A large bulb produces more greenery, its feather is usually larger, and it takes longer to harvest.
Small bulbs can also be used as planting material. Photo by the author
If you don't have enough of your own turnip onions to be used for forcing, you can specially buy them in the fall of samples - in supermarkets and specialized summer cottages they sell them at the end of the season with good discounts. I would not recommend purchasing such planting material for a turnip, but for distillation - just right.
You can plant onions for distillation in small containers with water or nutrient solution (so that the onion does not fall into the water, but only touches it) or into the ground. I personally like the second option more: the bulbs on the water often begin to rot, exuding a specific aroma with ground ones, I have never had such an incident.
In the soil for planting, I certainly add a hydrogel soaked in a solution of Gumi (this biological product strengthens plants, additionally nourishes them, and increases resistance to diseases). In room conditions, the soil substrate dries out quickly, and the hydrogel prevents the bulbs from suffering from moisture deficiency.
You can find Gumi preparations and hydrogel for planting in our catalog, which combines offers from various garden online stores. View a selection of these products:
To always be with the harvest, it is best to plant an onion regularly - every 10-14 days... Then, by the time the crop is fully harvested from the first "bed", the greens will ripen on the next - and so on until spring.
I use small plastic boxes for planting. I pour expanded clay at the bottom (there are no holes for draining excess moisture in the boxes, so drainage is necessary), on top - soil with hydrogel up to about half of the box. Having slightly compacted the mixture, I plant the bulbs in it close to each other, without burying them in the soil. I water it abundantly - that's all.
A box with green onions. Photo by the author
Since I plant usually already sprouted bulbs, the harvest does not have to wait long. I do not carry out any specific procedures (pruning, soaking, etc.), which are often recommended to be performed when forcing onions on a feather, - I do not see a special need, and there is always not enough time. But if you, friends, have such an experience, and you see the benefits of such processing, be sure to share your opinion in the comments - the recommendations of practitioners are always invaluable!
Basil is a popular spicy herb that is added to many dishes. You can try to grow it from seeds on a windowsill.
But keep in mind that a full-fledged bush can form in 9-12 months.
Follow this algorithm of actions:
1) Soak the seeds in water at room temperature for 2 days, change the water every morning.
2) After the planting material swells, place them in a potassium permanganate solution for two hours, and then dry on a paper towel.
3) In the container in which you plan to grow the plant, pour a layer of drainage, and then the soil so that about 4 cm of the upper edge remains free.
4) Plant the seeds in moist soil to a depth of 2 cm and maintain a distance of 1 cm.Place the container on the sunniest windowsill and cover with foil to create a mini greenhouse, but do not forget to air the planting daily for at least 10 minutes.
5) You should notice the first shoots in about 2 weeks. Then remove the film.
6) Once your shoots have reached a height of 7 cm, add soil to the edges of the container to strengthen the shoots.
7) Water the basil in the morning every day, and in hot weather also at lunchtime.
Basil is an ideal plant for your windowsill garden. Room temperature, humidity and light levels are suitable for it. If this is your first time planting spicy herbs at home, start with this crop - it won't let you down.
There are three ways to grow basil on a windowsill. The choice depends on what kind of planting material the gardener has at his disposal.
Basil at home on a windowsill, sown with seeds, develops for a long time. The first leaves can be tried only after 8-12 weeks, and the full harvest will have to be removed only after six months. But the bush will live at least 12 months
For landing you will need:
Growing basil on a windowsill should be warm. Place the seeded box where the temperature is kept at +20 C and above. Seedlings will appear in one to two weeks. After that, remove the film and remove excess plants. At least 3 cm should remain between adjacent bushes. If the seedlings stretch out, you can pour soil into the pot.
Seedling care consists of:
The growing shoots need to be pinched, stimulating lateral branching.
Any basil branch, lateral or apical, takes root well. You can buy a bunch of spices at a vegetable supermarket, cut off a few branches and put them in a glass of water. When the roots appear, the shoots are transplanted into the ground and covered with a glass jar on top so that they take root faster.
If the basil is sold in the store in the same way as it grew in a greenhouse - in a small glass filled with roots, you just need to transplant it into the ground. A plant grown from a cutting blooms pretty soon, so you will have to constantly cut and root new branches from it.
If there is a garden bed with basil in the country, in the fall you can dig up a lagging bush with a lump of earth that did not have time to bloom, and transplant it into a pot. After transplanting, the shoots are cut, leaving two or three leaves on each. The pot is placed in a bright place and watered periodically. The bush will grow until the New Year. The emerging flowers should be regularly cut off, and young side shoots should be used for food.
Basil grows well in any hydroponic system. Moreover, it develops faster in a nutrient solution and acquires a better taste and aroma than when grown in soil.
At home, it is convenient to install periodic flooding. The simplest ebb-and-flow system is a mesh container with a plant dropped into a reservoir. The solution ends with a pump from a tank located at the bottom of the tank. When the liquid reaches the upper level, the pump automatically turns off, and it flows by gravity into the tank.
When growing basil, the container is filled with vermiculite or mineral wool. In a coarse coarse substrate such as expanded clay, gravel, crushed stone, tender roots develop worse.
The flooding interval is selected empirically. Typically, the timer is set so that the substrate is flooded once every half hour.
There is no optimal time for planting, since proper cultivation allows you to grow basil on the window all year round, but if you first decided to plant this greenery at home, then you should choose the period when biological mechanisms honed by nature itself work: this time from the last decade of March and through the last decade of April. Yes, many will say that it is easier to plant luciferous plants in the country, but, firstly, not everyone has summer cottages, and secondly, you need to get experience when it is easiest, that is, during the natural growth and development of the plant ...
Seeds or seedlings are planted either in flower pots with a capacity of more than 1.5 liters or in long flower boxes, since the ash-trees are quite demanding and do not take root with frequent planting and small volumes of soil.
By the way, it is worth mentioning the latter separately: if you have already decided to grow greens at home, then dig up land in summer cottages, in extreme cases - from any potato field. You can buy soil, but in this case, be prepared to make a large amount of top dressing: if you dig up soil on your site, then before planting you will need a single application of mineral fertilizers, and if the soil is purchased, you will have to spill it twice with a solution of ammonium nitrate, superphosphate and chloride potassium (proportion per liter of water: 20/50/15 grams). At least 5 days should pass between watering the not yet cultivated soil; on the third day, the soil must be thoroughly mixed. So it is still more convenient to use the soil from the garden for greenery, since its mineral composition is close to the required one.
Boxes or pots should be placed on the south side, since the plant is thermophilic and always reaches for the sun: The optimum temperature for sustainable growth is 22 ... 24 degrees Celsius. Of course, you can plant basil on the balcony, but it is worth remembering that during cold snaps, you will have to use a covering material, so it should always be at hand. Basil, the cultivation of which is associated with low insolation at home, is picky about lighting: in winter, when the daylight hours are small, it will have to be extended up to 15-17 hours a day. The best way would be to create lighting for the home garden, for which you can use not only fluorescent lamps, but also halogen light sources. When using halogen lamps, keep in mind that it is also a powerful source of heat radiation, which means you risk overheating your bushes. Therefore, experienced gardeners only use halogen light on the coldest days and only if they are growing the plant on the balcony.
Here's a list. I tried to grow radishes at home, and dill, and cilantro as a child, planted beans and peas. I drove out the greens of beets and carrots, tried to preserve the basil transplanted from the garden ... In a word, there were many different experiments, and the listed crops were among my favorites.
Decisive when choosing there were factors such as ease of cultivation and undemanding conditions. I will repeat what I have already said more than once: almost any garden culture can be grown at home, but not everyone has the opportunity for this. Therefore, the best plants for a home garden are those that anyone can easily grow.
You can choose seeds of herbs and herbs for your home garden to your taste by looking at our catalog, which contains offers from various online stores of seeds and planting material. Choose seeds of green and spicy crops.
Let me also remind you that the Vegetable Garden on the balcony or windowsill: the peculiarities of home gardening is the topic of one of the lessons in our Academy of the Gardener. The recommendations of the specialists of the Agrofirm Search, together with whom we organized this project, will help beginners quickly master the wisdom of gardening, and experienced gardeners - to systematize and deepen their knowledge.
What do you grow on the windowsills? What do you agree with in my story, and what could you argue with based on your own experience? Share your opinion in the comments, tell us about your favorite plants!