Rooting Basil

ndgrowerJune 30, 2009

If I take cuttings off some of my basil plants, stick them in some potting soil and keep moist, how long will it take for the roots to establish and the plant to start growing again? I want more basil to go with all my tomatoes. I am new to basil, and dont remember how old my other plants are, what i really want to know is do i have time in zone 3-4 to grow more basil from seed or would rooting cuttings be quicker?

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Basil roots quickly in water. Once rooted, fill starter pots with soil, stand them in a tray of water until thoughly soaked, plant the rooted basil and leave the pots in water overnight. Remove and slowly harden the basil off to full sun.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2009 at 4:13PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

I'm glad to hear basil roots easily in water. Mine is flowering, and I fear death, so I hacked off 6 stems, stuck them in water, and my fingers are crossed! Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 2, 2009 at 10:55AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

How long does it take them to root in water? I'm changing the water daily and keeping them misted.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2009 at 8:36AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

I'm replying to my own post in case others would like to know how long for basil roots to appear. I started them on July 2nd, and it is now July 9th, and today the first roots appeared on 2 cuttings. I have 4 that lived, and they all have healthy basil leaves with the stems hanging in the water. Only 2 rooted so far, but I think the others will. Two died. Not bad. 4 out of 6 seems pretty good to me!

I am going to keep changing the water daily until I see bountiful roots, and then I'll pot them up.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 4:36PM
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golfngardennut(8 NW of San Antonio)

if you put an air bubbler from a fish tank in the water, it will root within a week I think. hydroponics might be able to provide extra info....

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 4:44PM
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A couple of other options, if I may. Basil seeds are so cheap, just throw a few seeds in your herb garden or pot every week. That way you'll always have Basil in various stages of growth.
Also, try Ball Basil. It seems to last without going to seed, and has nice small soft leaves that go great with tomato.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2009 at 11:51AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

Nice idea about the Ball Basil. I may just get some seeds for that one. Meanwhile, I planted my 3 "rooted in water" basil plants directly in damp soil. Didn't add a thing, and they are all growing fine! Then, I immediately went and started 4 new cuttings in water so I can have plenty of basil.

I did find that just putting basil stems in water works great for keeping the basil fresh, so it can be used in recipes. Just pluck off leaves as you need, and pick more to root in water! Once you pick the leaves and put them in the fridge, they go black on you. Water keeps them fresh as if they are on the plant still.

Evidently things that root easily in water infuse a natural rooting hormone throughout the water, so in the future, I'll dump the "hormone laden water" on some rose and grapevine cuttings I'm rooting outside because I change the water daily anyway. Can't hurt!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 10:52AM
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Glad to hear you were able to easily root your basil. How's about trying an experiment? Stretch a piece of plastic wrap over a glass of water. Poke five holes in it and insert a cutting in each hole. Let everything sit untouched. Do not change the water. See if they root faster.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 3:15PM
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