Fragrant basil not only smells good – it gives dishes an exquisite and interesting taste, and also repels pests. It is not difficult to grow basil at home, but since it is heat-loving, it is better to plant it through seedlings.
When to sow basil for seedlings
First, let’s figure out when to sow basil. The best time is March and April. It will be possible to plant seedlings in open ground 35-50 days after the emergence of seedlings.
How to plant basil for seedlings
To grow basil from seeds, you need to take the appropriate soil and container and create the right conditions for the seedlings:
- Soil for basil
It should be plump and nutritious. You can prepare it yourself: take humus or compost, peat and sand in a ratio of 2:4:1, or soil from the garden, peat and humus in equal proportions. You can also plant seeds in a ready mix from the store.
- Sowing container
A wooden or plastic box with a depth of 5-7 cm is suitable. If you do not want to dive (transplant) seedlings, you can plant basil seeds in peat tablets, pots or plastic cups with a volume of 0.5 liters. At the bottom of the container, you can put a drainage layer 1-1.5 cm thick – for example, perlite, broken brick, expanded clay – they will protect against stagnation of moisture.
- Direct planting of basil
Before sowing, the soil should be slightly compacted and moistened with a sprayer. Then make grooves 5-10 mm deep and plant seeds at a distance of 3-5 cm.
If you use individual containers, then plant basil with two seeds per hole.
Cover the seeds with soil 5 mm from above, re-moisten the soil from the atomizer and cover the container with glass or film. Put in a bright warm place – 23-24°C, water with warm water. Basil shoots appear after 10-12 days – then the shelter must be removed. As soon as the seedlings have the first two real leaves, they can be dived (transplanted).
Planting basil seedlings in the soil
2 weeks before planting basil seedlings, you need to start hardening them: periodically take them out into the fresh air, first for a few minutes, and then increase the time.
You can plant basil in the soil when it warms up to +15°C. You need to plant seedlings at a distance of 25 cm, after planting, water the plants. Remember that basil likes a sheltered from the wind and sunlit place and does not like heavy soil.