March 2017 Newsletter

Organic Gardening Tips for an Abundant Harvest

Welcome to the March Newsletter. I’m sorry it’s a little late due to my work commitments, but I’ve put together some helpful tips to get you growing and inspired.

This month, I’m sharing another quick ‘How To’ video in my Sow Simple series of free tutorials to help you grow an abundant, healthy garden in just minutes. Dig in!


How to Grow More Basil Leaves

In this quick 2 minute video clip, I share tips on how to grow more leaves on your basil plants. I show you an easy technique to stimulate new growth so you get an abundant harvest of this delicious herb.

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Like this video? Let me know in the comments if you found this helpful.

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2022-10-17T07:21:38+10:00Categories: Newsletters|Tags: , , , |4 Comments

Easy Guide to Growing Basil

How to Plant, Grow, Use and Harvest Basil

Easy Guide to Growing Basil - How to Grow Basil + Planting, Using & Harvesting Tips

Why Grow Basil?

As a gardener and cook, I couldn’t bear to have a garden without Basil. This fragrant herb has many benefits.

  • FLAVOUR: Basil is a favourite ingredient in so many dishes. From pestos to pizza, pasta, sauces and savoury meals, basil has no comparison for flavour. I use it in our kitchen as much for its delicious taste as I do for its medicinal properties.
  • MEDICINE: Countless studies confirm basil species have many health benefits. For example, in one study the essential oils were found to have “much better antibacterial activity than ampicillin” (penicillin antibiotic). In addition, the results revealed basil oils showed “a great ability to inhibit fungal growth, which was 10-to-100-fold higher than the commercial antifungal agents ketoconazole and bifonazole.” Not bad for a humble herb!
  • FOR POLLINATORS: I grow a variety of basils for bees and beneficial insects as the flowers provide valuable food. Perennial basil and Tulsi or Sacred/Holy basil are in flower all year in my subtropical climate. They are literally bee magnets for many species. I intentionally position them where I want pollination of fruiting crops and fruit trees. They make perfect companions.
  • BEAUTY: The attractive flowers look beautiful in any garden and have a long vase life in arrangements.
  • EASY TO PROPAGATE: Basil self-sows readily and it’s easy to save seeds. It can be grown from cuttings and propagated by layering.

Interested in growing basil? Try it in a pot, garden or on your kitchen bench as sprouts or microgreens. Every year, I allocate ‘prime real estate’ space to basil in pots, as well as around my garden. Read on for how you can use this versatile herb.

Basil Varieties – Which Basil should you Grow?

Basil (Ocimum Basilicum) is a member of the Mint family (Lamiaceae). Like its mint ‘cousins’, basil comes in a large range of aromatic varieties, with flavours to please even the fussiest taste buds. Annual varieties will last you a season and then provide you with free seeds. Perennial cultivars last much longer and are even better value. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Sweet Basil and Genovese are two of the most popular basil choices for pesto as they have mild sweet flavours.

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