Does Basil Grow Back? (EXPLAINED)

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Does Basil Grow Back

Growing basil is one of the most rewarding herbs to grow; it produces like crazy, is easy to care for, and smells great too.

But, how do you know if your basil will grow back?

Read on below to find out about whether or not basil grows back, and the answers to other related questions.

Does Basil Grow After You Cut It or Pick It?

basil plant spilling over the pot

When you cut basil properly, it grows back time after time. All you need to do is cut the stem of the plant cleanly (ideally at a 45-degree angle). Most gardeners cut them above or below a set of leaves. Cutting your basil plant in this fashion forces it to grow back twice as much new growth.

Does Basil Grow Back Every Year?

Common basil is technically a “true annual”, meaning you need to replant it each year. But, it is also considered a semi-perennial depending on the climate and hardiness zone you live and garden in. If the basil is allowed to go to full flowering and seeding, some of the surviving basil seeds are likely to grow back the next spring or even summer.

How Do You Cut Basil for Regrowth?

Cutting basil for regrowth is a simple task: cut the main stems of the plant (one-by-one) about one-third of the way down the plant (starting from the top). When you do so, the plant will regenerate approximately twice as thick (taller and wider too). 

How Long Does Basil Plant Last?

planting basil outdoors

Basil plants ideally live between 3 and 6 months. Outdoors, in the ground, or in containers, basil tends to grow roughly 3 to five months. When grown indoors, most basil plants may last up to half the year (producing the entire time, if you are harvesting consistently). Keeping your basil in a warm and sunny location and well-hydrated is the secret to longevity.

Can You Regrow a Basil Plant?

Basil regrows easily from cuttings, all you need to do is snip off a piece of the plant directly below a leaf node and drop it in a glass of water. After a few days, up to a week or more, new white roots will shoot out of the cutting. Once the roots develop for an additional week (around 2 inches long) or so, it’s time to transplant your basil clone to the garden (or a container if you’ll grow it inside).

How Do I Keep My Basil Plant Alive?

Basil isn’t a complicated or over-demanding plant to care for. Here are a few of the main secrets to keeping your basil plant alive:

  • Water it regularly (never let the soil dry completely)
  • Keep a light on it (or place it in a sunny place)
  • Pinch leaves back even if you don’t want to harvest (it encourages growth)
  • Remove bolts as soon as they begin to form (it keeps the plant growing longer)
  • Use a bit of plant food (a basic liquid nutrient solution mixed in water)
  • Consider companion plants for the basil (that way the basil isn’t lonely)