Genovese Basil Seeds
Genovese is a large leaf variety of basil. As the name suggests, it originates from Genoa, Italy—considered the world’s pesto capital. The flavour is somewhat similar to sweet basil, but the leaves are much larger, and in turn, the harvest is more abundant. One way to distinguish the varieties from each other is that sweet basil has pointy leaves, whereas the leaves of Genovese basil are much rounder, and the plant tends to be bushier.
The leaves have a strong perfume, are slightly spicy, and are very aromatic. It is classically used for making pesto and especially for tomato-based dishes. The leaves are rather large for basils and will grow up to 2 inches long. It is slow to bolt (go to seed) in the heat. It produces beautiful spikes of pale pink or purple flowers in the summer.
Basil prefers lots of sun and warm weather. All of the varieties tend to be sensitive to the cold or even cool weather. Depending on your location, you may want to start the seeds in late spring to early summer. Or you can start the plants indoors and transplant them outside when the warm weather arrives. Pinching or cutting back basil will encourage bushier growth for a more abundant harvest. When harvesting each plant, always try and leave a few leaves. Make sure to off any flowers that start to develop. Otherwise, the plants’ energy will go into the flowers instead of producing more foliage.
For more detailed information on growing, please visit our article: How to grow basil.
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