This spring, I planted my basil in containers. I like Genovese, which is the classic Italian basil. It has extra-large leaves with a strong aromatic flavor. Basil grows quickly in containers, its easy to water and to pick a few leaves to add to a delicious recipe. As the summer ends, basil begins to flower, pinch them off, and the energy goes into vegetative growth instead. That means more leaves for your favorite pesto. But eventually, basil plants get tired, so I propagate basil by using cuttings. The propagation of basil plants is easy, and now let’s see how it’s done.
First, you need to begin by selecting the upper parts of the plant for cuttings. You must choose new shoots, the younger, the better. Use a clean pair of scissors to make a sharp cut. I emphasize clean because there is the potential to infect the plant cutting.
After you select your best cuttings, wet the tip and dip in rooting hormone. The use of rooting hormone is not necessary but almost assures root growth, and that’s a good thing. Next, I place them into a Rockwool cube, which serves as inert support while the roots develop. All that is left to do is add them to a tray of water and wait for roots to appear.
This time of year means its time to bring your basil inside. If you have a sunny window that should do or you may have a greenhouse for protection from the change in season. At any rate, propagation of basil is easy, but it’s not just about making more plants. It’s more about extending your growing season so that you will have plenty of basil brimming with an aromatic aroma to keep flavoring your most delectable dishes.
I intend to grow my basil hydroponically using a deep water culture system along with a Mars Hydro SP 150 LED grow light. Like I have been saying, basil grows excellent in containers, and that means hydroponic containers too. After all, who needs soil to grow plants?