Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Will Basil Man Strike Again?

Needless to say at MCGA we have an abundant number of talented and committed gardeners.  Tom, pictured below with his basil is one of them.  You might have brushed by his basil patch in the front of the garden in years past and wondered how on earth did he get them to grow so well.  We have solicited Tom and he has agreed to give us some of his tips and tricks.  Read on to learn what the "Basil Man" does to get such great basil. 

 (Note: This photo is not from this year, it is from 2 years ago.  Hopefully the weather will cooperate this year and Tom will get a similar harvest. Fingers crossed!)

Q: When do you plant your basil seedlings in the ground Tom?

A:  I finally got around to planting my basil seedlings earlier this week! Given that warm sunny weather days are not a given in June, my next measure is to be sure that night time temperatures do not fall below 50 degrees and that there is not "too much" rain.

Q:  After you plant the starts, what else is involved in their care?

A:  Mostly common sense stuff, keep on top of weeding, add compost, mulch and feed with a diluted fish fertilizer.  Slug protection is a must.  If you basil seedlings are leggy feel free to plant a inch or so deeper.

Q: Do you have any other gems of wisdom when it comes to basil cultivation?

A: The only thing that I do that is different is to plant my basil a couple inches closer to each other than what the package instructions state. Each plant loves the sun, but I like to think that a basil canopy later in the summer helps to keep moisture in the soil.

Well thanks Tom for all the great advice!  Basil is such a staple in many cuisines, why not go out and plant some basil today!

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