How to Plant Basil From a Seed


Basil is a small shrub from the mint family, used to flavor food such as soups, salads, meats and Italian dishes. Basil thrives in full sun, yet will grow in partially shaded areas. It does best in well draining soil and some gardeners prefer to plant basil in raised beds, as that enhances drainage. Recommended soil pH is 6.4, according to Jeanine Davis, horticultural specialist at North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service.

Step 1

Schedule the planting for the late spring, when all danger of frost has past.

Step 2

Till the soil, so that it is well worked. Lightly dampen the soil with a garden hose.

Step 3

Sow eight to 10 seeds per inch, scattering over the well-worked damp soil.

Step 4

Cover the seeds with a ¼- inch layer of peat moss and moisten.

Step 5

Keep the peat moss moist, not soggy.

Step 6

Thin the plants when they are several inches tall, removing the weakest looking seedlings and spacing the plants 10-inches apart.

Things You'll Need

  • Tiller
  • Garden hose
  • Peat moss


  • "How to Grow Herbs"; Philip Edinger; 1975.
Keywords: growing basil seeds, planting basil seeds, sowing basil seeds

About this Author

Ann Johnson has been a freelance writer since 1995. She previously served as the editor of a community magazine in Southern California and was also an active real estate agent, specializing in commercial and residential properties. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from California State University of Fullerton.