The Secret to Successfully Growing Supermarket Basil

Ok, so the warm weather arrived this week and if you’re anything like me, you had a vision of mediterranean salads with fresh herbs and large dollops of cool mozzarella. In the excitement, you may have bought fresh pots of herbs from the supermarket to line your kitchen windowsill and stood back to bask in the loveliness.

“Look at this, this is the good life,” you may have thought to yourself.

…and then a week later, the herbs look a little worse-for-wear despite your best attempts at caring for them. Then the realisation sinks in and you remember why you only bought them once last year too.

However, this can change! You can have the dream of fresh herbs in your kitchen to pick at will and add to your spaghetti bolognese or to garnish your soups with flair.

supermarket basil repotted in dip dye pot

The first thing to do when you get home with your new herbs is to repot them straight away. Choose a pot that is at least 3cm bigger in diameter. Fill it with lovely, nutritious compost before taking your herb plant out of the supermarket pot and re-potting it into your chosen vessel. I like to choose really pretty ceramic pots for this purpose, either ones that I have bought or those that I have painted myself. The picture above shows my newest basil plant in a plain terracotta pot that I painted in two colours to give a dip-dye effect. More pictures and a very simple DIY post can be found here.

Give your newly planted herbs a good watering before placing them in your chosen location. They seem to do well near a window with good, but not harsh, light.

repotted supermarket basil

In order to keep your herbs in tip-top condition, continue to pick leaves off to encourage new growth (although take care not to reduce your plant to mere stalks – it needs leaves to survive)! You could also consider giving the plants the occasional feed with a liquid fertiliser such as this one (affiliate link).

In these new conditions and if repotted when they have noticeably outgrown their original pot, the herbs should last a long time. In the case of basil, the green spindly stems will start to get woody and hard (a healthy sign) and you will have a constant supply throughout the summer season.

Hurrah that we can enjoy the good life!

Have a great day x


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