Basil Seeds: How To Harvest Them

For ambitious amateur gardeners it is a matter of honor to propagate homegrown basil for the next season. An uncomplicated method succeeds by means of sowing seeds obtained by hand. The following instructions show how it works quite simply.

Basilikum Samen gewinnen

Abundant seed harvest requires abandonment of the basil aroma.
Starting in July, a basil plant relentlessly strives to develop a flower and, by extension, numerous seeds. As it invests all its energy in this growth, the basil aroma falls by the wayside and becomes bitter. The gourmets among amateur gardeners prevent bud formation by permanently harvesting the shoots. Meanwhile, those who want to gain seeds for sowing, allow the pretty flower.

Instructions for harvesting seeds

If the white or pink flowers are nearing the end, ideally wait until completely withered. In this way, the seeds have enough time to mature and gain germination. Proceed as follows:

  • cut off the withered flower stalks
  • hold them one by one over a bowl to strip the flowers and seeds with your fingers
  • grind the mixture of petals and seeds between the palms of your hands

In the final operation requires a little patience, because the mixture must be sifted several times. As long as there are still crushed petals among the seeds, the process is repeated persistently.

How to properly store basil seeds.

If the harvest of the seeds was successful, the method of storage until the date of sowing is important. The freshly harvested seeds should first dry in a bowl for another 2 to 3 days to allow the last bit of moisture to evaporate. A screw-top jar is best for storage or an airtight tin. It is important to note to label the jar with the plant name and date.

Tips & Tricks
A large community has formed among amateur gardeners who consistently garden according to the lunar calendar. According to this, homegrown basil seeds germinate much better if sown when the moon is waxing. Skeptics should at least give the age-old peasant wisdom a chance by giving it a try.