Can Basil be Cultivated Perennial? Tips & Care

Can Basil be Cultivated Perennial? Tips & Care

Within the wide variety of varieties, various perennial basil can be found. However, this does not go hand in hand with winter hardiness, because no basil withstands frosty temperatures for a long time. You can find out how perennial cultivation nevertheless succeeds here.

This way you can enjoy a basil plant for several years

If you are aiming for perennial cultivation of basil, we recommend planting in pots. This form of cultivation provides the necessary mobility to relocate the herbal plant to winter quarters. Alternatively, you can place the bucket in the garden in order to easily bring it out at the right time. How to hibernate:

  • If the temperatures permanently fall below 10 degrees Celsius (50F), basil moves
  • extensive pruning is not necessary
  • the winter quarters are sunny and warm, at 15 to 20 degrees Celsius (59-68F)
  • continue to pour only when the substrate surface has dried
  • Fertilize organically and liquidly at intervals of 4 to 6 weeks

The windowsill on the south side of the house is therefore recommended as an excellent location for perennial basil. A sun-drenched, heated conservatory is also an option. Under the conditions mentioned, you will continue to harvest fresh basil during the cold season, so that you do not have to rely on the preservation of the aromatic flowers and leaves.

The best perennial basil varieties

In order for the effort of overwintering basil to be worthwhile, the variety should be selected with care. The following breeds are particularly recommended:

  • ‘Wild purple’ (Ocimum canum x basilicum)
  • ‘Garden Basil’ (Ocimum kilimanscharicum x basilicum)
  • Russian shrub basil ‘Gorbatschow’ (Ocimum x basilicum ‘Gorbatschow’)
  • ‘African Tree Basil’ (Ocimum gratissium x suave)
  • Green-leaved African Basil ‘African Green’ (Ocimum kilimanscharicum basilicum)

The varieties of the trendy Thai basil are also suitable for perennial cultivation. Although the exotic herbal plant comes from the warm regions of Asia, its leaves are remarkably stable.


Perennial basil usually comes from a cross between different varieties. For varietal propagation, this means that only offspring with cuttings is possible. When you extract seeds for sowing, it’s a guessing game as to which attributes of the parent and grandparent plants will prevail here.

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