This annual herb comes from the mint family, native to India. There are four common types of basil among the numerous varieties, including sweet basils, dwarf basils, purple-leaved, and scented basils. Ready within two months, it does best in soils kept moist by frequent waterings and won’t need much fertilization, if any. It prefers to be set in a location with plenty of sun and can be started anytime in spring or summer. It’s recommended that indoor basil receives a large receptacle to hold the amount of water it loves, and you’ll want to harvest consistently to keep new growth coming in.
Used fresh and dried, basil is delicious in pizza and pasta dishes, sauces, salads, and dipping oils. It’s often infused in teas, promoting acne and stomach ache relief. Also high in antioxidants, basil contains phenolics, which are attributed to cancer prevention, and is high in magnesium, advocating for heart health.