Hutchinson Farm Herb Guide
Grown at Hutchinson Farm since 1990's. Available May 2018, in 4" pots and planters.

Basil is one of the most popular herbs, and comes in a variety of colours, sizes, leaf types, and flavours.
  • Winter Hardiness: tender annual
    Light Requirements: Sun, part sun
    Where to plant: Well drained soil

  • In the Garden
    Insects think it's yummy too, so plant in containers on your deck away from the garden to reduce insect damage. Extremely frost sensitive.

  • In the Kitchen
    The regular flavoured basil is frequently paired with tomatoes, thus features prominently in Italian cuisine, and is a must-have for your kitchen. Sweet Basil is the standard variety, but there are many other cultivars that share its wonderful flavour, as well as many exotic flavoured varieties.

  • Harvest
    Use the leaves by cutting top down to remove blooms which promotes branching.

  • Preserve
    Best to use fresh, or blanche and freeze.

Regular Basil Flavoured Varieties:
  • Sweet Basil
    Ocimum basilicum
    The standard variety, we use this more than any other variety in our kitchen. 20 - 30" tall, leaves 2 - 3" long

  • Aristotle (released 2011)
    Ocimum basilicum
    Simply the best small leaved variety. Dense and bush-like, this basil maintains a beautiful mounded shape throughout the season, making it the most attractive basil for your garden. Very slow to bolt. 12 - 18" tall,
    leaves " long

  • Eowyn
    Ocimum basilicum
    Just like regular sweet basil, but more compact!

  • Red Rubin
    Ocimum basilicum
    The dark leaves (purple, not red) will provide your dishes and garden with a pleasant contrast to the standard green basil varieties. Flavour is very similar to sweet basil. When growing from seed, about 5-10% of the plants will have green in the leaves (we cull these plants). 12 - 18" tall,
    leaves 2" long

  • Genovese Basil
    Stronger flavour than sweet basil, making it perfect for pesto, but maybe too strong to pair with tomatoes, which we recommend sweet basil. Not all Genovese type basils are created equally. We grow Seed Saver's Exchange's strain, use your nose and smell the difference!

  Exotic Basil Flavoured Varieties:
  • Lime Basil
    Ocimum americanum
    Zesty lime flavor and aroma. Delicious in salads, salsa, and fish and chicken dishes. Compact, mounding plants average 15" in height. More heat tolerant than sweet basil.
  • Thai Basil
    Ocimum basilicum  var. thyrsiflora
    Essential in Thai cuisine, the strong anise flavours and aromas are distinct -don't substitute for sweet basil! The plant itself is beautiful: green leaves with purple stems, and tall spires of white flowers. Beautiful in the garden or containers. 15 tall, leaves 1 - 2" long

  • Cardinal Basil
    Ocimum basilicum

    Cardinal has a huge head of purple flowers, and looks fantastic. Flavour similar to Thai basil.