Bold Basil Growing Diary

July 18, 2022

Bold Basil Growing Diary

Grow Bold Basil with Hamama!

The wait is over for basil microgreens! Our Bold Basil is available for a limited time only so be sure to stock up then grow along with us to ensure a bountiful harvest.

Appearance:

🌱 The seeds are oval shaped and can range in color from dark brown to black.

🌱 Medium-green leaves

🌱 The true leaves look like tiny baby basil leaves (so cute!)

🌱 Short & lush (~1-2 inches tall, much like clover!)

Flavor Profile:

🌱 Sweet, Lemony, Fresh

🌱 Tastes much like mature basil 

Nutritional Highlights:

🌱 Excellent source of vitamins C, A, E, K & B6

🌱 High in numerous minerals

🌱 Have antioxidant, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties

 

Basil has antioxidant,¹⸴² antibacterial³ and anti-inflammatory⁴ properties. Basil is a source of vitamins C (a potent antioxidant), A and E (healthy vision, skin and immunity), K (hemostasis and bone health) and B-6 (supports immunity and nervous system health). It is also a source of numerous minerals critical for good health, including calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper and phosphorus.

How to enjoy them:
 

These gourmet basil microgreens add a fresh, sweet and herbal touch to any dish. They can be enjoyed raw as a garnish to salads, pasta dishes, pizzas, eggs, paninis and more. They can also be used to make flavorful sauces, dressings, or a zesty pesto! This microgreen variety is one you want to stock up on while we have it, so grab an extra grow tray and get growing!

We’ve put together some delicious recipes using our limited edition, gourmet Summer Basil microgreens in our FREE Recipe eBook...Be sure to download it and try them out! We know you’ll 💚 them!

 

Recipe eBook Sneak Peek:

 

Green Goddess Salad                       Lemon Basil Vinaigrette                             Gourmet Grilled Cheese

Herby Zucchini Pasta                       Southwest Orzo Salad                                   Basil Cream Sauce

Herbaceous Pistachio Pesto 

Onto the growing process! 

Let’s unwrap these beauties and get to planting.

Here are a few things you should know before you grow:

  1. The peel time is around 7-10 days after the initial soak
  2. The grow time is around 14-16 days
  3. Height is about 1-2 inches tall when ready to harvest.
  4. Note the Calcium Carbonate on the top of the Seed Quilt (more info below)
  5. Fun Fact: basil is a superb pest repellent!
  6. Intermediate Grower:  
    • Oversoaking:
      • Basil seeds are smaller in size so it's important to keep an eye on the water level both prior to the soaking step and immediately following the soaking step. Something to remember for all seed varieties is that you never want the seed portion of the Seed Quilt to be sitting or sloshing around in the water. If there is water pooling on top of the seeds, lift your quilt up and let it drain out for a few seconds and pour a tiny bit of water out of the tray. The water level should be at the mid to top portion of the coconut mat after the initial soak and no higher.
    • Colder Temps:  
      • Most microgreens are sensitive to colder temperatures (65 degrees and below), which can stunt or prevent full germination. This in turn can throw off their peel time, watering cycles, and total grow time. Ideally the greens should be kept somewhere between 67F-80F and away from any windows where it could be a few degrees cooler.
    • Longer Grow Time:
      • Basil microgreens are one of the more slow growing microgreens. Because of this it is super important to avoid over-watering your quilt but also being sure to check the water level. If you need to add water, just bring the level back up to the bottom of the coconut mat and avoid pouring water directly over the seeds. Try to keep the tray in a darker (but not cold) area for the first week for better germination (or cover the tray slightly with a book or magazine, still allowing for airflow).

Day 1- Planting the Seed Quilt:

Just follow the simple Hamama instructions & check out our YouTube channel for some great tips and tricks to ensure a perfect harvest! This video demonstrates how to soak your Seed Quilt for optimal and even germination!

* You may notice a small amount of white powder on the top of your Basil Seed Quilt - We put that there for a reason! Calcium carbonate powder is a food-safe addition to this Seed Quilt that controls against excess moisture. It has a wide variety of uses in many types of food, like preserving it without putting any extra chemicals in it. The national institutes of health have approved carbonate calcium’s use in food. Just avoid touching the powder with your hands then touching your eyes.

Give your Seed Quilt a quick shake to evenly distribute the seeds, add water to just a bit below the fill line on your tray, then set the quilt on the tray’s bottom ribs. To ensure that it is adequately soaked, press it down long enough for the entire quilt to turn a shade darker.

After the soak, you want to be sure that the quilt is properly propped on the tray's bottom ribs so that neither side of the quilt is dipping into the water. You also want to be sure the Seed Quilt is not sloshing around in the water (pour some out if this happens) and that no water is left pooling on top of the seeds. Here are some extra watering tips!

Day 2 - Quiet Germination  

You won’t see much happening on day two but there are some things to note:

-The water level may have gone down from day one. That’s normal (and good)! Our Seed Quilts and trays are designed to provide the seeds with enough water to last them from day one until harvest day. No need to add additional water at this point.

-Another thing to note is the environment where you keep your greens! When referring to temperature, anywhere between 65-80 F is best. The warmer they are in that range, the faster they will grow on time with predictable health. Cooler temps can stunt the growth and it'll take a little longer for the seeds to germinate. Microgreens don't necessarily need a lot of light to grow (especially pre-peel) but will halt if they are too cold so I would prioritize warmth over light! Remember our rule of thumb: if it’s comfy for you, it’ll be comfortable for your little plant babies!

 

Curious what that top layer is for?  It's important to have a weighted black-out period for the first few days of growing microgreens. The weighted black-out period (seeds held down + darkness) encourages the seeds to send their roots downward, as opposed to growing outward and sending out root hairs to grab moisture from the air.

Day 3 - Hang tight

Not many changes to note here yet! With our other Seed Quilts, you will commonly see some germination by day 3 or so, but hold tight for basil! You may see that the top paper is puffing just slightly.

Day 4 - Hello Seedlings!  

You will likely see some germination at this point depending on your growing conditions (mainly temperature). If so, you’ll also notice that the top paper is puffing just slightly too. At this point, they should be starting to set their roots down into the coconut mat!

Day 5 - Getting closer to peel time!

Day 6 - 

You should notice even ballooning across the Seed Quilt from the seeds germinating! It’ll be ready to peel in another day!

Try not to peel too early! As the roots begin to grow, they need that top layer to encourage them to penetrate the bottom of the mat. Without it, the roots risk staying above the mat, which would cause them to dry out. Not only does it help the roots but it is also super beneficial for the greens themselves! It keeps moisture in from the initial soak, regulates temperature and humidity, and also shields the seeds from light during the germination process.

Day 7 - PEEL DAY!

Each pocket of the Seed Quilt has evenly ballooned and the greens are now breaking through the top paper. Totally ready to peel!

This particular Basil Seed Quilt is a great example of a ballooned + ripped Seed Quilt. If your Seed Quilt is ballooned, you can just peel the cover off in one motion! Some quilts will have microgreens that rip through the top layer rather than balloon. All you have to do in that case is remove the pieces individually.

Day 8 - Soaking in the sun! 

Now that your greens aren’t hiding under that top layer, you can see just how much they grow day to day! They will turn greener as they absorb more light. As the greens get bigger they also tend to take up a lot more water. That makes this the perfect time to check the water level of your greens, especially if you live in a drier climate! If you notice that the water level has gone below the halfway point of the fill line and bottom of your tray, you can add enough water to reach the ridges at the base of the tray. This gives those roots enough water to sustain the greens without over-watering them! 

*Remember, this only applies to dry or really hot growing conditions - the normal function is that you just add water once! :) 

You may also notice some of the black basil seeds stuck to the greens - this is normal and totally okay! You can try “petting” the greens gently to encourage them to fall off.

Day 9 / 10 / 11 / 12 - Growing & Greening Up!

Be sure to check in to make sure there is still a bit of water left in the tray so the greens don’t prematurely wilt. The water level should remain at the bottom of the coconut mat and no higher.

Day 13 / 14 / 15 - Harvesting Time

For a general rule of thumb, your Basil microgreens will range from 1-2 inches tall at maturity (short but sweet!). Just like any other microgreen though, this is just a reference as growing conditions (light, temp, etc) will affect the mature height slightly. 

Harvesting & Storing your Summer Basil Microgreens 

Your basil microgreens can be harvested by cutting at the base & storing them in a glass Tupperware or Stasher Bag in the fridge. They will last for about 10 days that way!

If you prefer to munch on your greens while they are in the tray, the mature greens can remain there for a few extra days, but you must periodically check that they have enough water to drink! Otherwise, they may prematurely wilt over from thirst. Microgreens can become more fibrous the longer you leave them in the tray after maturing. Check out our YouTube episode on Harvesting your Microgreens!

 

* Make harvesting & storing your homegrown greens a breeze! The Hamama Harvesting Kit includes a reusable Stasher Bag®, cute branded harvesting scissors, and natural fiber bamboo scrub brush for cleaning your grow tray!

@hamama_greens Harvesting Day💜✂️🌱

Do you need to rinse your microgreens before use?

When the microgreens are ready to harvest you don't need to rinse them, but you can if you want. Whatever you feel comfortable with! Since there’s no soil, they’re already super clean. Most folks rinse if they have pets who may have been snooping around in them :D

*For longer storage, don’t rinse the harvested microgreens before storing. Instead, rinse just before eating, if desired!

 

What's next?

After harvesting your greens, you can compost or re-purpose the used coconut mat! Learn how to Upcycle your Coconut Mats here! Then, you can give your grow tray a quick wash & plant your next Seed Quilt! Learn how to wash your grow tray here.

🌱 We hope you LOVE this sweet addition to our Hamama family - Bold Basil 🌱

Bold Basil Microgreens 🌱

Bold Basil 3-Pack

3 Bold Basil Seed Quilts

$29 + Free Shipping

The Bold & the Bountiful

Bold Basil 10-Pack + 2 Grow Trays

$89 + Free Shipping

Sup'herb' Variety Pack

Bold Basil, Culinary Cilantro, Garlicky Chives

$29 + Free Shipping

References:
  1. Jayasinghe, C., et al. (2003) Phenolics composition and antioxidant activity of sweet basil (Osimum basilicum L.). J. Agric. Food Chem.51, 4442-4449. DOI:10.1021/jf034269o
  1. Ahmed, A. F., et al. (2019) Antioxidant activity and total phenolic content of essential oils and extracts of sweet basil (Osimum basilicum L.) plants. Food Sci. Human Wellness8, 299-305. DOI:10.1016/j.fshw.2019.07.004
  1. Patil, D. D., Mhaske, D. K., Wadhawa, G. C. (2011) Antibacterial and antioxidant study of Osimum basilicum Labiatae (sweet basil). J. Advanc. Pharma. Edu. Res.2, 104-112.
  1. Takeuchi, H. et al. (2020) Antiinflammatory effects of extracts of sweet basil (Osimum basilicum L.) on a co-culture of 3T3-L1 adipocytes and RAW264.7 macrophages. J. Oleo Sci.69, 487-493. DOI:10.5650/jos.ess19321


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