AeroGarden prune basil: Basil is one of the easiest herbs to grow in an Aerogarden or other hydroponic system. You can always have fresh basil on your counter.
Planting Hydroponic Basil
Basil grows very big, so keep that in mind as you plan your hydroponic system. It can quickly get in the way of your other plants and herbs.
It’s best to give the basil some room to grow. In a hydroponic garden, it can be tempting to fill every hole, but sometimes plants need more space, so leaving a row empty may be necessary.
You can also grow a row of seedlings next to the basil you plan to take out of the garden and plant outside. For example, flowers or vegetables that don’t grow well in hydroponics.
Put two or three seeds in each sponge. After the seeds sprout, you can thin them out if you need to. iDoo basil is grown the same way, in case you were wondering.
Different Kinds Of Basil
- Hydroponic Genevese Basil
- Sweet Basil
- Holy Basil Grown in Water
- Lemon Basil
- Thai Basil Grown in Water
- Lime Basil
- Cinnamon Basil
- Globe Basil with heat
- Greek Basil
How to Grow Basil in a Hydroponic System
Only in my Aerogarden and iDoo gardens have I used growing sponges. I’d love to hear about any other grow media that someone has used in an Aerogarden or any other type of hydroponic system that fits on a countertop.
Grow sponges are easy to use and make it easy to move plants.
Feeding Aerogarden Basil
When you change or add water to your hydroponic garden, be sure to add the right amount of nutrients based on what the manufacturer says to do.
It is best to add nutrients to your system every time you add water or change the water in it. If you’re adding nutrients to water that already has them, remember that you won’t need as much as if you were starting from scratch.
AeroGarden Prune Basil
When your basil is about 6 inches tall, cut it back. Cut off the top leaves, which are the youngest. There will be a group of about 5 leaves. Just above the next set of leaves, cut down. If you cut off too much of the main basil plant, it won’t come back.
If your plant has become bushy, trim or pinch off a few sets of leaves from the top at a time. Do not let the plant bloom.
If you don’t cut basil back, it will get too tall and the light will burn the leaves, making them curl and turn brown. Read AeroGarden Prune Basil to know more about it.
When you pick your basil
After you pick the leaves, you can keep them in the refrigerator for a few days.
Put them on a kitchen towel to dry, and then put them in a storage bag.
Or, I would leave the leaves on the stem and put the stem in a glass of water in the kitchen window until I was ready to use the leaves.
The other way I’ve tried to keep them is to put them in a bag and put them straight into the freezer. Before you do this, they must be dry.
I know that basil leaves turn black and look bad when they get cold, but this method keeps them green and fresh.
We now have a vacuum packer that we bought…
So, once I have enough leaves to harvest, I’ll try this and report back.
The other way to keep them is to dry them….
We keep a pot of chilies that are ready to dry on top of our boiler.
We’ve also had good luck with basil leaves…
They lose some of their essential oils, so they don’t smell as good.
But it does work…..
You could also use the oven with the door cracked open and set to the lowest temperature.
I’ve heard that if you put whole basil leaves in oil and put them in the fridge, they will last for more than a year. But I haven’t tried it.
We will try this and let you know how it goes…
And the other way is to grind them into a paste with oil…
or create a pesto…
But if you grow basil in an Aerogarden, you will have to give away a lot of it.
As soon as it decides to grow, and you prune it to make sure you get a good crop, the plant will keep giving you fruit….
Can basil grown in hydroponics be planted in soil?
Yes, basil can be moved from one pot to another. I like to put mine in a pot with soil and keep it inside until it gets used to the soil. Only then do I move it outside.
When you take the basil plant out of the Aerogarden, be careful and separate the roots as much as you can. Some of the roots will die, but basil is pretty tough and will grow a new root system when it is moved.
Move the pot outside, but put it somewhere in the shade for a few more days. Get your plant used to its new surroundings slowly before you put it in its final spot in the garden.
Basil likes full sun in the morning, but not in the afternoon when it’s too hot. I like to put it along our fence, where it gets morning sun but afternoon shade.
When you cut the ends off of your basil, you can put them in a small vase with water, like a vase of flowers. They’ll last just a bit longer. Make sure the leaves don’t touch the water, or they will rot.
Another way to store the cuttings is to lay them in a container for vegetables that has some air flow. I store all kinds of fruits and vegetables in these containers. They add several days to its life.