- This basil has a very intense citrus (lemony) aroma.
- Ideal for South Asian or North East African Dishes
- Takes about 2 months to grow
The unique flavour of lemon basil is a must. Lemon basil is orginaley from Southern Asia and Northeast Africa (a hybrid of 2 different types of basil)
A key benefit for cooking is that it can be used in many different ways.
Not often available in shops but it’s very easy to grow at home, see below.
Typical Lemon Basil recipes
Lemon basil is the ideal herb to grow if you like cooking South Asian or North East African Dishes.
For example Indonesian, Philippine or Arabic…
The unique flavour of lemon basil is a must. In addition a key benefit is that it can be used in many different ways – for example eaten raw with a salad, used to season many cooked dishes or even used in sweet desserts.
- Indonesian Eggs with Spicy Basil Sauce (Telur Bumbu Kemangi)
- Manipuri Lemon Basil Fritters (See video below)
- Nam Ya Pork Curry with Khanom Chin
How to grow Lemon basil at home
The ideal basil to grow is an Heirloom strain from south-eastern New Mexico. )
It loves warm very sunny conditions and hates cold draughts. If you want to grow basil in soil then:
- Days from seed to harvest – about 40 to 60 (2 months).
- To start sow the seeds thinly into soil at a depth of 6mm
- They will germinate in 12 to 40 days
- Then thin the seedlings or transplant leaving 38 cm between plants.
- They will grow to about 60 to 70 cm high
Growing Lemon Basil using Hydroponics or Aquaponics
Basil is one of the most popular herbs to grow using hydroponics – as it will be ready to be harvested quicker than planted in soil.
But in addition it is ideal for aquaponics – especially because it loves nitrogen. In addition, whether using hydroponics or aquaponics you will be able to grow it all year around – providing you with fresh herhs when you want it.
- Intense citrus aroma, especially popular for vinegars and seafood dishes.
- Plants are 12-18″ tall, neat habit, with small green leaves, white flowers, dries nicely.
- Sow April in trays, pots, etc of good seed compost in a warm place to maintain an ideal temperature of 55-60F.
- Sow in well-drained compost, just covering the seed with compost, but do not exclude light, which is beneficial to germination.
- Germination usually takes 14-30 days.
- Transplant seedlings when large enough to handle. Harden off and plant out 30cm (12in) apart when all risk of frost has passed.
- Prefers a well-drained soil and a sheltered sunny site. Can also be grown on a sunny windowsill.