Aromatic and bright green color basil is a herbaceous plant, a symbol of the beautiful season that can not be missed in a home. Ideal to grow in a vegetable garden, lends itself to vegetation even in pots and give a verve note on the kitchen shelves or on a balcony. The basil belonging to the Lamiaceae family is native to India and tropical Asia and found spread in Italy in 350 BC. In the times of Charlemagne. A royal plant, as suggested by the etymology of its Greek name Basilicum, which is made up of branched oak leaves and oval lanceolate leaves of varying intensity of green and can reach 60 cm in height. There are more than 60 varieties, the most popular and precious being the classic Basil or Genoese, which is characterized by its particular aroma of jasmine, licorice and lemon.
Basil for growing and growing needs a mild climate and a soft and highly drained soil. To begin cultivating it, you buy seedlings from the nursery or by sowing. For the latter it is good to prepare the soil by enriching it with organic fertilizer and compost and proceed with regular and daily watering to develop the seedlings. Sowing in a closed place can be carried out between January and March, in a garden or outdoor pot from March to May. Once the seedlings have been obtained, these must be thin or you can place the best in a small jar, inserting ridges and pebbles on the bottom to favor drainage and soft soil enriched with organic fertilizer. To have lush plants it is essential to place the containers in sunny places such as a sill or balcony and water them regularly and abundantly avoiding water stagnation.
Property and use in the kitchen
Basil rich in vitamins, mineral salts, flavonoids and antioxidants, if consumed raw is a valid antiage that counteract the signs of time and the action of free radicals, helping the body to stay young. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, it helps digestion and is able to fight stress and fatigue.
Basil is one of the protagonists of the Mediterranean cuisine and diet. It is the main ingredient of Genoese pesto, a sort of sauce made by rubbing leaves with evo and pine oil, perfect for seasoning pasta, pizza or spread toast. Raw basil leaves can not be missed in tomato sauce, salads and soups. It finds wide use in the form of essential oil in aromatherapy, to counteract insomnia and improve mood. It is also an excellent natural repellent for flies and insects, for which it is toxic.