Native to the Indian subcontinent, Holy Basil is a herbal plant with religious and cultural importance. People in other parts of the world might use it as a food ingredient, but for Hindus, this plant is sacred.

Holy Basil is majorly grown in tropical areas as a perennial herb.

How to grow Holy Basil plant

Propagation and planting: Sow the seeds in early Summers when the temperatures are around 25 degrees Celsius. Try sowing the seeds indoors for better germination.

Place the Holy Basil seeds on the topsoil and cover it with a very thin layer of organic compost. Spray water and keep the soil moist until germination starts. Germination should begin within 1-2 weeks.

After germination, when the seeds have grown into 2-3 sets of true leaves, transplant them in larger containers.

Soil: Holy Basil plants aren't picky about the soil composition, they will do fairly well in poorly and well-drained soils. Try to ensure the soil is well-drained, porous, and nutrient-rich.

Sun: Holy Basil can grow in partial shade but thrives in full Sun. At least 4 hours of direct sun is required for good growth.

Water: Water the plant only when the topsoil is dry. Avoid overwatering in this plant. During monsoon, do not water this plant and during the winter adjust your watering schedule to avoid any unwanted diseases.

Fertilizer: Apply a well-balanced fertilizer every 4 weeks. I would recommend using Vermicompost. You can use the fertilizer as a top dressing or can replace the 2-inch topsoil with compost.

Pruning: Regular pruning is important if you want to keep this plant in good shape and harvest some leaves. Use a high-quality pruner for this.

Growing Holy Basil plant during the Winter season can be quite challenging because of the temperature drop. Move the plant indoors during periods of extreme cold to avoid damage.

Follow the above tips for a healthy growing plant and keep harvesting the leaves to use them in drinks like herbal tea and soups. Till then take care and happy gardening!