I'm starting my own herb garden and want to plant Basil, but I'm not sure which is the best variety. I use Basil for a wide variety of dishe

Since I will not be making just pesto or Italian food, I was thinking of Basil Genovese. Or would sweet Basil be better?

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inpatskitchen
inpatskitchen January 29, 2012

I plant about 10 sweet basil plants every year and use it in everything. It's pretty hardy and all purpose.

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mainecook61
mainecook61 January 30, 2012

I find Genovese basil to be the easiest to grow in a New England garden. It doesn't bolt too soon and it thrives under a variety of conditions. That said, I am also a fan of a variety called Fino, which has tiny leaves but big flavor and would do well in a pot. I always grow Thai basil, but it tends to have tougher stems and to go to flower more quickly. Check out the varieties in the online catalogs of Johnnys Selected Seeds or Fedco. (Lemon basil is nice, too. The purple varieties are ornamental but also tasty and beautiful in a salad.)

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pierino
pierino January 30, 2012

Thai basil and African basil aren't true basil but they can be a bit hardier. The frustrating thing about growing basil is that you have to be watchful and pinch off the flower buds or else the plants will "bolt" and you will be left with leggy stems.

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healthierkitchen
healthierkitchen January 31, 2012

For Asian dishes, it's great to have a Thai basil plant around!

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