Archive for July 3rd, 2011

Sweet Basil – Ocimum basilicum

Sweet Basil
Sweet Basil

“A man taking basil from a woman

will love her always.”

Sir Thomas Moore


This native of the Old World tropics has the classic square stem of all Mint family plants. It is a great companion in the garden for Tomatoes and Peppers; but grows badly if planted near Rue or Sage. If planted near Raspberries the fruit set may be damaged!


Basil has been used by boiling the leaves in water and being given for all obstructions of internal organs, and will help stop nausea and vomiting. The seeds were taken internally and laid upon the wound of poisonous serpent bites. The seeds were also used to cure warts.


The smell of basil is also healing, having an awakening aspect that helps refresh you if overworked. It can be used in the treatment of bronchitis, fatigue, colds, migraine, gout, coughs, etc. Place a single drop on your sleeve. When your thinking becomes fuzzy just inhale! The EO can be used in combination with hyssop, geranium and bergamot for a massage oil for use when depressed. 


The leaves are used fresh or dried in sauces, stews, salad dressings, on vegetables, poultry, in vinegar, etc. This herb is complimentary to tomatoes, so much so that it has been given the nickname of ‘the tomato herb.’ It also goes well with eggplant, zucchini, and spinach. It is one of the ingredients in Italian Seasoning, which is so commonly available here in the States.


To make your own Italian Seasoning blend just take

            2 tablespoons basil

            2 tablespoons marjoram

            2 tablespoons oregano

            2 tablespoons rosemary

            2 tablespoons thyme

            1 tablespoon parsley

            1 tablespoon garlic powder

            1 tablespoon onion powder

            1 teaspoon sage (optional)


Mix all ingredients well and store in an airtight container. Preferably use within 6 months for freshness and maximum flavor! (Note: Do not use garlic salt or onion salt!)