Saturday, 7 October 2017

Purple stripey Basil

Last summer I grew a heap of different basil (Ocimum basilicum) varieties.  They ranged in leaf shape and size, they ranged in taste, they varied in productivity.  A comparison of those basil varieties can be found here.

By far the prettiest variety of basil that I grew was an unnamed striped purple basil that I have been working on for a few years.
Unnamed purple stripey basil, looks nicer in real life
The stems and backs of the leaves are dark purple (the colour in the pictures does not do them justice) the top of each leaf was green with purple veins giving it a striking appearance.  Again, the pictures don't do it justice, the colours in real life were darker and more vivid.  It had purple/pink flowers and dark stems. 

The taste was not as sweet as I would like, but it held up to cooking far better than genovese basil which makes it rather useful.  The leaves were a bit smaller than I would like, but they look amazing and they grow enough leaves that it makes up for them being a bit small.

I plan to grow this variety again this year, I think it is now a stable strain.  If it is stable it will need a name.
Pink/Purple basil flowers, dark stems
Like all basil they grow well as cuttings
Some higher leaves were less striped when the plants began to flower
Dark stems, purple striped leaves, very ornamental (and edible) basil

One of my plants, tall and narrow
Plants get tall and narrow if not pinched and made to branch

Top of leaf green with dark purple stripes
Dark purple stems and backs of leaves
Same plant, same chopping board, same day, but the lighting was somehow different

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