April 13, 2012

Replanted Basil Update

In February, I immersed 2 woody stems from a dying basil plant in water in the hopes that they would grow roots.  One of the stems has not grown roots yet, but has produced new leaves.

The second stem has grown larger leaves, and several roots that are 3-5 inches long.  The plastic container I used, which formerly held gummy candy, proved perfect for this task.  It was clear and let sunlight in, kept the stems a uniform temperature, and had a lid that was easy to cut to place the stems in.

To harvest the woody plant stem, I lifted the lid from the container, cut a slice out of the lid from the edge and gently pulled the stem sideways to the edge of the lind and free of the plastic.  I had to be careful not to harm it on the way or destroy the lid since it needed to stay intact to allow the second stem to grow roots.

While the lid was off, I dumped out the water, gently wiped the layer of material that had collected on the rootless stem off, and added fresh water.  The rootless stem is sitting in the windowsill now, and will hopefully grow roots.

I planted the stem that had grown roots in a milk jug by laying down a layer of garden soil, setting the basil inside it so the roots wouldn't get damaged, and gently pouring more soil over the roots.

The end result is a basil plant identical to the old and dying one from which I harvested these stems.  The new plant should produce the same great flavor and scent and cost nothing.

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