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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Anne Lurie
 
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Default Keeping Basil

A few weeks ago, when I was concerned that we might have a frost here, I cut
several stems of basil & stuck them into a vase, thinking I could keep the
basil relatively fresh until we could make pesto.

Although we picked off some leaves, we hadn't pulled the stems themselves
out of the vase, even when changing the water in the vase. We were
surprised to see that the stems had rooted! (And these were cut stems, not
whole plants.) So, today I cut more stems and put them in the vase with a
little MiracleGro to see what happens.

Has anyone else had any experience with something like this? I suppose
basil is among the few tender herbs that would need the help

Anne Lurie
NE Raleigh







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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
MT Byers
 
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Default Keeping Basil

Anne Lurie wrote:
We were
surprised to see that the stems had rooted! (And these were cut stems, not
whole plants.) So, today I cut more stems and put them in the vase with a
little MiracleGro to see what happens.

Has anyone else had any experience with something like this? I suppose
basil is among the few tender herbs that would need the help


Yes, I made the same discovery under the same circumstances a few years
back when I lived in a Manhattan appartment. We could get these great
bunches of basil at the stores up there, and I was just trying to save
them for a while in a glass of water. Roots started sprouting in about
a week's time.

The basils are sort of related to the mints, I think, and you probably
know how lively and hard to kill they are.

I'll pass on another remarkable rooter I just discovered: These
ornamental sweet potatoes you see all over. I am not kidding; they
start showing roots in two days. I am trying to overwinter some in the
garage so that I won't have to buy any next year. They make a pretty
sturdy ground cover and are good in containers, too.

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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Kira Dirlik
 
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Default Keeping Basil

I picked a little shoot off my Bride Eggplant, and it seems to be
getting a root. I plan to go out and cut them all off to root for
next summer's garden! My basil, which I also have not had time
to make into pesto, does not appear to be rooting (yet), and has been
in a vase of water for about 4 days.
Kira
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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Gena
 
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Default Keeping Basil

"MT Byers" wrote

I'll pass on another remarkable rooter I just discovered: These
ornamental sweet potatoes you see all over. I am not kidding; they
start showing roots in two days. I am trying to overwinter some in the
garage so that I won't have to buy any next year. They make a pretty
sturdy ground cover and are good in containers, too.


yes, amazingly, i hacked ours back (1 plant larger than the footprint of a
small car), and on my way to the compost, i dropped a piece. 2 weeks later
i was walking down the path and saw it, remarkably it wasn't even wilted
yet. i went to pick it up to put it in the compost, and it was attached to
the ground. this was in a space of time with very little rain.

the new kudzu?

gena


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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Heidi
 
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Default Keeping Basil

I'm curious as to the taste of your basil. I picked off some leaves on
my basil plant 2 weeks ago and the leaves tasted exceptionally bitter.
My plant is a sweet basil, the kind normally used for pesto. Has anyone
had the same experience? What can make basil extra bitter? I had
assumed it was because I harvested the leaves so late in the season.

TIA!
Heidi



Anne Lurie wrote:

A few weeks ago, when I was concerned that we might have a frost here, I cut
several stems of basil & stuck them into a vase, thinking I could keep the
basil relatively fresh until we could make pesto.

Although we picked off some leaves, we hadn't pulled the stems themselves
out of the vase, even when changing the water in the vase. We were
surprised to see that the stems had rooted! (And these were cut stems, not
whole plants.) So, today I cut more stems and put them in the vase with a
little MiracleGro to see what happens.

Has anyone else had any experience with something like this? I suppose
basil is among the few tender herbs that would need the help

Anne Lurie
NE Raleigh











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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Anne Lurie
 
Posts: n/a
Default Keeping Basil

Heidi,

Unfortunately, I'm the wrong member of the family to ask about basil tasting
bitter, as my hubby's the cook. BTW, it was Genovese basil, as I recall,
rather than a "specialty" basil.

However, your question triggered something in my mind [not quite enough for
a real answer, alas........]? Do you pick the flowers off the basil? If
so, did you do that during the summer, but stopped doing it this time of
year?

I think I read that lettuce gets bitter after it "bolts" (stalk grows more
than leaves do because plant is trying to set seed?), and I wonder if the
same might apply to basil. Or perhaps the lower temperatures have something
to do with it?

On a new note, has anyone here ever tried simply letting basil go to seed?
(I assume it would eventually produce seed.) One year, I had a packet of
basil seeds that I never got around to starting indoors. I noticed that the
packet directions indicated that it could be sowed directly in the garden.
Although I was skeptical, I figured I had nothing to lose, so I tried it.
To my surprise, the directly-sowed basil not only germinated, it eventually
overtook the plants I had put in as seedlings!

Anne Lurie
NE Raleigh


"Heidi" wrote in message
. com...
I'm curious as to the taste of your basil. I picked off some leaves on
my basil plant 2 weeks ago and the leaves tasted exceptionally bitter.
My plant is a sweet basil, the kind normally used for pesto. Has anyone
had the same experience? What can make basil extra bitter? I had
assumed it was because I harvested the leaves so late in the season.

TIA!
Heidi




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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Eileen Gregory
 
Posts: n/a
Default Keeping Basil

Volunteer basil covers my garden every year.
Eileen

Anne Lurie wrote:

Heidi,

Unfortunately, I'm the wrong member of the family to ask about basil tasting
bitter, as my hubby's the cook. BTW, it was Genovese basil, as I recall,
rather than a "specialty" basil.

However, your question triggered something in my mind [not quite enough for
a real answer, alas........]? Do you pick the flowers off the basil? If
so, did you do that during the summer, but stopped doing it this time of
year?

I think I read that lettuce gets bitter after it "bolts" (stalk grows more
than leaves do because plant is trying to set seed?), and I wonder if the
same might apply to basil. Or perhaps the lower temperatures have something
to do with it?

On a new note, has anyone here ever tried simply letting basil go to seed?
(I assume it would eventually produce seed.) One year, I had a packet of
basil seeds that I never got around to starting indoors. I noticed that the
packet directions indicated that it could be sowed directly in the garden.
Although I was skeptical, I figured I had nothing to lose, so I tried it.
To my surprise, the directly-sowed basil not only germinated, it eventually
overtook the plants I had put in as seedlings!

Anne Lurie
NE Raleigh

"Heidi" wrote in message
. com...
I'm curious as to the taste of your basil. I picked off some leaves on
my basil plant 2 weeks ago and the leaves tasted exceptionally bitter.
My plant is a sweet basil, the kind normally used for pesto. Has anyone
had the same experience? What can make basil extra bitter? I had
assumed it was because I harvested the leaves so late in the season.

TIA!
Heidi


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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
JoanD'arcRoast
 
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Default Keeping Basil

In article , Heidi
wrote:

I'm curious as to the taste of your basil. I picked off some leaves on
my basil plant 2 weeks ago and the leaves tasted exceptionally bitter.
My plant is a sweet basil, the kind normally used for pesto. Has anyone
had the same experience? What can make basil extra bitter? I had
assumed it was because I harvested the leaves so late in the season.

TIA!
Heidi


I have always noted that subsequent harvests of basil leaves taste more
"harsh" than the first picking. The first pesto of the season is the
sweetest and best, but that doesn't exactly halt production around
here. I'm happy with whatever we get, and tend to add mint to the
recipe to sweeten it.

-j
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Old 13-11-2003, 02:14 PM
Heidi
 
Posts: n/a
Default Keeping Basil

Anne, you are right! I had been picking the flowers off the basil
plants, but had stopped doing this in September. The plant was
flowering when I picked the last leaves that had tasted so bitter. I
bet that is why!

Mint in pesto sounds like a great idea! I will try that next year!

Have a great weekend everyone!
Heidi

Anne Lurie wrote:

A few weeks ago, when I was concerned that we might have a frost here, I cut
several stems of basil & stuck them into a vase, thinking I could keep the
basil relatively fresh until we could make pesto.

Although we picked off some leaves, we hadn't pulled the stems themselves
out of the vase, even when changing the water in the vase. We were
surprised to see that the stems had rooted! (And these were cut stems, not
whole plants.) So, today I cut more stems and put them in the vase with a
little MiracleGro to see what happens.

Has anyone else had any experience with something like this? I suppose
basil is among the few tender herbs that would need the help

Anne Lurie
NE Raleigh











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