Cool Member
Posts: 79
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 3:40 pm
Location: Richardson, TX

flowers on Thai basil

Should I be pinching the pretty purple flowers off my Thai Basil as I would the flowers on my Sweet Basil?
Thanks! Anna

Newly Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 8:33 pm
Location: Palm Springs, California

Pinch Flowers for Better Basil

Basil is an annual, and like all such plants, flowering can signal the beginning of the end.

But we want our basil to keep making leaves for as long as possible for cooking all summer long. Flower production changes the plant from vegetative growth (leaves) to reproductive growth (seeds). We prune off our garden flowers the moment they fade so new ones form, otherwise going to seed makes them slow, and soon they'll stop altogether. Same applies to basil and cilantro, another annual that's popular in summertime seasoning gardens.

So the moment the flower bud starts, nip it off, and keep feeding and watering generously so the vegetative growth continues unhindered by brief drought or insufficient moisture. Check them each day and do the deed for all the fresh pesto your want well into the fall!

Full Member
Posts: 53
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:12 pm
Location: Mauritus Island

Maybe its time to consider saving some seeds. In my case I always get about a dozen of plants that grow from seeds that fell around the mother plant.

The Helpful Gardener
Posts: 7493
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

I am a fan of African Blue Basil as it does not go bitter at flowering, allowing you to use flowers in food, which I like to do (we are currently enjoying chive flowers on salads :D ) But alas, no African Blue in the garden this year... can't do everything I want without moving... :roll:

Scott Reil

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