How to Plant Basil in Pots


Many gardeners might consider an herb garden incomplete without at least one variety of basil growing in the sun. If you lack sufficient space for an herb garden in the soil, pot up some herbs in containers and place them in a sunny, outdoor location. Basil grows energetically, whether you place it in the ground or in a container. Plant basil in pots, give it plenty of water and sunshine and you will soon have enough basil to provide for every culinary need.

Step 1

Fill the planting container with 2 inches of gravel to ensure that the planting media drains adequately.

Step 2

Add the planting media over the gravel, filling the planting container approximately 3/4 full.

Step 3

Remove the basil plant from its temporary container carefully and place it into the center of the container. Situate the crown of the basil plant just below the rim of the container.

Step 4

Fill additional planting media around the basil to plant it approximately 1/2 inch deeper than it was growing in its temporary container. Firm the soil down with your hands to finish planting the basil.

Step 5

Water the basil plant generously immediately after planting it and place the container in a sunny location.

Step 6

Provide frequent water for the basil plant to keep the soil from drying out. Do not water to the point of soggy soil.

Step 7

Remove the basil blossoms as they appear to keep the plant producing more leaves. You can add these blossoms to fresh salads.

Step 8

Fertilize the basil plant once in the middle of the growing season by mixing the fertilizer with water according to package recommendations. Pour the fertilizer over the soil carefully without allowing it to splash on the foliage.

Step 9

Harvest basil leaves by cutting stems immediately above a leaf node. By cutting whole stems, you encourage the basil plant to grow more lateral growth and become fuller.

Things You'll Need

  • Planting container with drainage holes (8 to 10 inches in diameter)
  • Gravel
  • Soilless planting media
  • Basil plant
  • All-purpose fertilizer (water soluble)
  • Pruning shears


  • Colorado State University: 2001: Year of the Basil
Keywords: basil growing, basil grows, plant basil

About this Author

Kathryn Hatter is a 42-year-old veteran homeschool educator and regular contributor to Natural News. She is an accomplished gardener, seamstress, quilter, painter, cook, decorator, digital graphics creator and she enjoys technical and computer gadgets. She began writing for Internet publications in 2007. She is interested in natural health and hopes to continue her formal education in the health field (nursing) when family commitments will allow.