Thai Basil is a staple of Asian cuisine and provides a stronger basil flavor than the traditional sweet basil. This varieties produces leaves that have an anise or clove scent. Plants are slightly smaller than traditional basil varieties and average 12-18″ tall. This makes it a great variety for container or raised bed gardening. If allowed to flower, plants produce beautiful, large clusters of purple flowers that can be used for fragrant bouquets.
Thai Basil can be harvested multiple times throughout the spring and fall growing seasons. It will bolt and flower once temperatures warm in summer. Be sure to harvest only one-third of the leaves on a plant at one time. This will ensure that the plant has plenty of leaves remaining for continued production. Basil grows best when it has consistently moist soil without any prolonged periods of drought. The aroma from basil leaves can also serve as a pest deterrent in the garden, repelling common garden pests like aphids and hornworms.
Thai Basil may be direct-seeded or transplanted, although we recommend transplanting. If direct seeding, use a walk-behind seeder and plant densely along the row. We suggest using a modified #1 or #2 plate for direct seeding basil. As always, seed plate holes should be modified to fit the size of seed being used. For large, full-sized plants, thin to one plant every 4″ along the row. Transplanting is our preferred method of planting basil. We recommend starting transplants 3-4 weeks before the desired outdoor planting date. Basil transplants grow great in our heavy-duty seed starting trays, where they develop a solid root ball with roots that are trained to grow downward. Plants are ready to go in the ground when they can be easily pulled from the cells in the seed starting tray.
Thai Basil Planting Information
Planting Method: direct seed or transplant
When to Plant: early spring and fall
Planting Depth: 1/4″
Seed Spacing: 4″
Row Spacing: 18″
Days to Maturity: 65
Disease Tolerance: None