Basil - (Ocimum basilicum)

This herb is native to India, Africa and Asia and is a member of the mint family.

Basil is also known as St. Josephwort and is an annual and comes in a wide variety of flavors, colors and sizes depending on what kind of seeds you choose. For example if you are looking for a basil with color you should choose Red Rubin, Dark Opal, Osmin or Purple Thai which gives you a purple basil. If you are looking for a Basil by size, Mammoth, Napoletano or Valentino is the basil for you, and if you are looking for a Basil with a different flavor you should choose Anise, Licorice, Spice, Cinnamon, Lemon or Sweet Dani.

Basil can grow up to 3 feet tall. Grow Basil in a sunny location in a moderately rich, well-drained soil. Sow after last spring frost with about 12 inches between plants. The plant matures in about 85 days.

Basil have the tendency to get very tall so to increase the leaf production of your basil remove the bloom when the plant flowers.
Harvest the leaves whenever you feel like having some basil. Harvest the flowers as they open.

Put some basil in your wallet or purse to attract money, success and prosperity.

The leaves makes a good addition to salads, veal, poultry, soups fish and egg dishes. Also try to mix Basil with rice, pasta or vegetables while you are cooking.

The purple Basil (Ocimum basilicum purpurescens) is also excellent as a garnish.

Parts used: Flower tops, leaves.

Basil should be avoided in early pregnancy.

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