12 Facts About Basil


Basil, called great basil, is a culinary herb of the family Lamiaceae .

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Basil is native to tropical regions from Central Africa to Southeast Asia.

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Basil is an annual, or sometimes perennial, herb used for its leaves.

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Basil is native to India and other tropical regions stretching from Africa to South East Asia, but has now become globalized due to human cultivation.

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Basil is sensitive to cold, with best growth in hot, dry conditions.

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Basil plants require regular watering, but not as much attention as is needed in other climates.

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Basil can be propagated reliably from cuttings with the stems of short cuttings suspended in water for two weeks or until roots develop.

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Basil suffers from several plant pathogens that can ruin the crop and reduce yield.

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Basil is one of the main ingredients in pesto, an Italian sauce with olive oil and basil as its primary ingredients.

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Basil is commonly steeped in cream or milk to create flavor in ice cream or chocolate truffles.

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Basil is used in folk medicine practices, such as those of Ayurveda or traditional Chinese medicine.

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Basil has religious significance in the Greek Orthodox Church, where it is used to sprinkle holy water.

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