How to Plant Basil Indoors


Basil is a sweet herb that is used in cuisine throughout much of the world. If you regularly use it in cooking, you can save money by growing it yourself. Basil requires at least three months of hot weather to fully mature outdoors. If you live in an area that doesn't support the needs of basil, you can grow it indoors. When grown indoors, you have more control over the temperature as well as the amount of sun and water the plant receives, which can result in bigger, healthier plants.

Step 1

Fill a planter with a potting soil that has a pH level between 6.0 and 7.5. Most potting soils have a pH in this range, but read the package to be sure. The planter should be made especially for herbs and have a hole and drainage dish at the bottom.

Step 2

Add filtered water to the soil until it is thoroughly soggy, but do not add so much water that the soil turns muddy. Any excess water should drain through the bottom hole of the planter.

Step 3

Place three basil seeds into the center of the pot and cover them with 1/4 inch of soil. It's best to plant a couple extra seeds in case one or more seeds do not germinate.

Step 4

Place the planter in a window that gets at least six hours of sunlight per day and has a constant temperature between 70 and 75 degrees. South-facing windows are best as they generally get the most sun exposure.

Step 5

Water the soil as often as necessary to ensure it stays wet throughout the entire lifespan of the basil. Depending on the conditions of your house, it could be anywhere from once every few days to once every other week.

Step 6

Thin the plants if necessary once they reach a height of 2 inches. If more than one plant grows in a single planter, it can cause overcrowding, which may result in less than satisfactory plants. To thin the plants, simply pull them out with your fingers.

Things You'll Need

  • Planter
  • Potting soil
  • Filtered water


  • Ohio State University Extension: Growing Basil
Keywords: grow basil indoors, water basil plants, plant basil seeds

About this Author

Kenneth Coppens is a part-time freelance writer and has been for one year. He currently writes for Demand Studios, eHow, Associated Content and is the Indianapolis Craft Beer Expert for Examiner.