In the Garden
Sweet Basil loves the hot summer weather and well drained soil. It will not do as well when the temperatures drop below 40 degrees. It is a very tender plant so high winds or cold nights will damage the leaves. It grows very quickly so it is best to plant it in your garden. Planting it next to your tomato plants will enhance the flavors of your tomatoes. Trim the flowers off of the basil to promote leaf growth and also to keep the leaves from becoming bitter. Keeping the plants properly spaced out, adding mulch, and watering the ground instead of the actual plant will reduce the chances of diseases on your plants.
Sweet basil is by far the most popular basil in the world because of its’ distinct flavor and large leaves. However, “Sweet Basil” is more of a category of basils than an actual species but all “Sweet Basil” are very similar in taste, aroma, and appearance. The most common use for Sweet Basil is Pesto but possibilities are almost endless. It is used in Italian tomato sauces, soups, salads, soft cheeses, pasta salads, and sandwiches just to name a few.