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Ocimum basilicum var minimum, Greek Basil, Bush Basil, untreated

£0.79

Greek Basil is a compact bush, globe shaped, with small rounded leaves and holds its shape for the whole season. Good basil flavour.

A perennial plant in the tropics, it is frost tender and is grown as a half-hardy annual in temperate zones.

It is a very good plant to grow in the house or greenhouse, its aromatic foliage helps reduce problems caused by insect pests. It requires a good summer in Britain if it is to do well outdoors. Bush basil is a good companion plant for tomatoes but it grows badly with rue and sage. When grown near raspberries it can retard their fruiting.

The growing or dried plant is an effective insect repellent. It is a good plant to grow in the home, where it repels flies, or in the greenhouse where it can keep all manner of insect pests away from nearby plants.

It has been used in the past as a strewing herb.

As a herbal remedy, bush basil has a milder action than sweet basil and is used mainly in the treatment of flatulence and griping pain in the digestive system.

Prefers a rich light well-drained to dry soil. Requires a sunny sheltered position if grown outdoors. Tolerates a pH in the range 5 - 8.

Sow mid to late spring in a greenhouse and only just cover the seed. Germination is usually free and quick, prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle. If growing basil outdoors, plant out after the last expected frosts.

Edible uses
Leaves and flowers - raw or cooked. Used as a flavouring or as a spinach, they are used especially with tomato dishes, pasta sauces, beans, peppers and aubergines. The leaves are normally used fresh but can also be dried for winter use. A very pleasant addition to salads, the leaves have a delightful scent of cloves.
A refreshing tea is made from the leaves. 
The seed can be eaten on its own or added to bread dough as a flavouring. When soaked in water it becomes mucilaginous and can be made into a refreshing beverage called 'sherbet tokhum' in the Mediterranean.
An essential oil obtained from the plant is used as a food flavouring in mustards, sauces, vinegars etc."
 
 

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