DFJ will show you how to easily and quickly dry and store your basil for use all year round. Low light will cause slow, leggy growth, and new leaves will tend to be smaller or stunted. Once the soil dries out, you should resume watering, but check the plant every day or two, and only water once the surface of the soil is dry. It’s easy to find the growing node on the stalk. How to Dry Basil Leaves in The Oven. of dried basil and pour 1 cup of boiling water over it per serving. Hi, I’m Andrew, and Smart Garden Guide is my website all about indoor gardening and houseplants. The disease is caused when conditions become too moist, including too much shade or soggy soil. Ideally, herbs should be dried at about 95°F (35°C). Use caution to prevent the herbs from scorching. Crumble & store: Remove the basil from the oven and cool. Now with the surface of the leaves dry and only healthy leaves remain in your collection, you can spread the leaves on a wire mesh and keep them in the sun. To keep the leaves from browning and curling, ensure the basil receives enough water without drowning it by allowing the first 1 to 2 inches of the soil to dry before watering. A woody stem will be firm and less flexible than younger stems. You won’t have to worry about setting the food dehydrator too high or too low. The great thing about growing Basil is that it is so easy to propagate. Now you need to tie them in bundles and hang them by the stems to dry in an airy place. Dried basil leaves hold up much better in cooking flavorwise, and is another reason that it is used in dry form. Set the microwave to medium and the timer for 20 seconds at a time. The fastest way to dry basil leaves is by using a microwave oven, but it's really only a valid method for a small amount of leaves. Microwave on high and dry for 2 to 3 minutes per cup. So in a way, it works best for when you gather your leaves in small patches throughout the summer. However, persisting low light will soon lead to yellowing of the leaves, brown lower leaves, leaf drop, and eventually cause your basil plant to languish or die. A super fast method of drying basil uses the microwave. The moisture loss was recorded at every 60 min interval using top pan digital balance. Set your dehydrator to the setting indicated by the manufacturer of your dehydrator for herbs, mine was 90°F. Your email address will not be published. Like preserving many other types of food, drying basil is the sustainable way to go. To prepare the leaves for air drying, make sure the stems are equal size and wash them in a deep bowl. Spider mites are very tiny and can multiply rapidly. Drying basil leaves saves you money and will taste better than store-bought herbs. So anything between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit is acceptable. The oven might get rid of the moisture in the leaves but if you’re not careful it could burn them as well. As a little experiment, Alex and I took a stab at a recipe. Line jelly sized mason jars with parchment paper. The drying of basil leaves was carried out using fluidized bed dryer. Freeze Basil Leaves. {time will vary depending on the size of leaves – smaller leaves will dry much faster, and require less time – my larger leaves are usually dried out and ready after 90 seconds or so.} Wash basil and remove leaves from stems. Fresh basil leaves also have a tender, more appetizing bite. Dried basil leaves, on the other hand, have a deeper, more intense flavor. Prep: Remove the basil leaves from the stem, then wash and dry completely. When the basil is coated in oil, you’re ready to prepare the containers. One way to oven dry basil and save energy is to simply wait until finishing cooking something at 350 degrees. As part of the mint family, basil (Ocimum basilicum) has many varieties including: As an annual herb, basil favors hot and dry weather conditions. This method is only suitable for hot regions that get plenty of sunlight all day. If the soil is heavy, add some sand to balance it out and improve aeration. Make sure you don’t pile them on one another, carefully separate them. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/articles/how-dry-herbs-microwave Diseases – Fungal diseases may be the cause of basil leaves curling up, but chances are, you’ll notice other telltale signs.For example, powdery mildew is a fungal disease that causes a grey, powdery substance on the leaves. Place the trays in your oven that’s heated up to its lowest temperature setting. Discover 500+ spicy recipes and hundreds of pepper profiles, comparisons, cooking tips + more. Your Basil plant responds to lower light by arranging the chlorophyll in the leaves to catch as much light as possible. There are many different types of basil with Genovese Basil probably being the most familiar to most people. Create a bundle … You can either let the basil air dry or gently pat it dry with a towel. Basil is an indispensable ingredient when it comes to Italian cuisine. Remember, this only applies to harvesting in patches. Avoiding underwatering can be difficult, but developing a habit for checking the water needs of your plants every day or two is a good strategy to prevent it from happening. You only want the leaves of the herb. Add a tablespoon of dried basil leaf, a handful of fresh leaves or a few drops of basil oil to three cups of water and bring to a boil. This will encourage the basil plant to grow more leaves. Although there are a few troublesome diseases that can affect Basil plants, there are really only two that will result in a Basil plant dying or wilting badly. Tea from fresh basil calls for twice as much of the herb. Most growers wait until the leaves are two or three inches in length before cutting. Or, place the trays of basil … They should be crumbly … Basil plants aren’t cold hardy, and they will usually suffer greatly if exposed to any frost. The two most common causes of a Basil plant dying are overwatering and underwatering. But test the soil with a stick to make sure the bottom isn’t dry. Place it in bright, indirect light rather than in full sun and water your plant every time the surface of the soil feels dry to touch. Heat them on high for one minute. Temperature stress, lighting problems, disease, or pests are also common causes of a basil plant wilting or dying. There's nothing like fresh basil leaves, but dried basil has a lot of use in the kitchen. I always love making use of natural energy sources when possible, like homegrown herbal sun tea, and of course our fabulous solar panels. Scissors work better since they don’t damage the stalk of the plant. Basil plants prefer full sun, so south- or west-facing windows are ideal. Place the wet leaves on a clean dish cloth and allow to air dry on the counter. I like to fill the bowl up with as many basil leaves I can fit in and then crumble with my fingers. Plants may survive a light freeze. The answer is in drying and storing the leaves so that they maintain their aroma no matter how long you keep them. Turn the oven off after about 20 minutes and let the basil remain in the oven as it cools off. Wash & dry basil leaves. So if your basil plant is dying, bear in mind that it may just be the end of its normal life. The first step in drying basil is to pick it from the garden. Of course, there will be a difference in taste. If you like, you can also gently roll the leaves up in a clean towel for a few minutes to absorb excess moisture. Root rot and overwatering go hand in hand, so if you spot any signs of this, check your plant thoroughly. If your plant has fusarium wilt, the only solution is to dispose of the plant and take great care not to infect your other plants. Lay the leaves in a single layer on paper towels and microwave on low for up to 3 minutes. This is the easiest method, but you need to have a food dehydrator. There are two ways to oven dry basil. To pluck the leaves, use either a pair of sharp scissors or garden clippers. Dry Basil Leaves. If the stem feels wet or mushy, then your plant has a major problem and you should take rapid action to save your plant. Too much water can also cause wilt. Remove those that are, rotate those that aren’t and return them the microwave for another 30 seconds. Basil is rich in potassium, magnesium, calcium, and iron as well as vitamins A and C. In traditional medicine it has been used to cure many health conditions including indigestion. Spread the leaves out in a single layer on a microwave-safe dish. There are alternative uses. Factors include; Overwatered Basil will initially develop paler, yellowing leaves, that often start from the lower leaves upwards. Thankfully, they often recover very well, even when it looks like your Basil plant is dying. There are numerous treatments that can control your bug infestation. Planting basil in a pot that is too large. Spread the leaves on the dehydrator tray in a single layer. If you’ve forgotten to water your basil plant, and the soil is dry, your plant will be wilting badly and looking very sad. Lay the leaves out in a single layer on a dehydrator tray or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. For method 1, 2 and 3, the first few steps are identical. Or if the weather is nice, you can let them dry on a dish cloth outside. It’s also a staple in Italian, Thai, Vietnamese, and South Asian cuisines. Brown stems can be a sign of bacterial or fungal diseases. They can be pruned and propagated regularly to provide a continuous supply of fresh basil, as long as you can keep your plants healthy. So avoid soaking the pot or leaving it to dry out. Without oxygen, the roots stop working and your Basil plant cannot get the water and nutrients it needs to survive. Your daily dose of crafts, recipes, beauty, fashion, living tips and home guides. In this article, we’ll consider the best way to plant and maintain Basil. Flash freezing is a simple method of freezing basil because it has few steps and takes … The most common causes of Basil leaves turning brown are under or over-watering, temperature stress, insufficient lighting, pests, or diseases. Read this article for instructions on how to propagate Basil. The plant will not grow leaves again since the season is over. Now put them in a jar and tighten the lid to keep them fresh for the rest of the year. Add mulch to improve water retention and organic compost when the leaves appear to encourage its growth. Once the plant establishes roots, you can add liquid fertilizer in moderate doses once a week. Loughrin, J. H. and Kasperbauer, M. J. Check after a few hours and allow them to continue drying if they haven’t dried completely. If you’ve picked up a Basil plant for your kitchen herb garden, it’s easy to forget the importance of providing optimal lighting for your plant. If you're using an oven, turn the oven on to the lowest setting (usually 175-200F) and put the filled baking sheet in the oven. Lay out Basil Leaves in a single layer on the paper towel. So before they start to shrivel, it makes sense to dry and store the leaves for later use. Root rot is a disease caused by a collection of bacteria and fungi which result in similar symptoms and have a common cause. What makes basil even more appealing as a plant from a gardener’s point of view is how easy it is to grow, harvest, and store it. Lower temperatures can also increase the risk of overwatering, due to reduced plant water requirements and lower evaporation. Which one you choose depends on your resources, the time and patience you have, and how good you want your dried basil leaves to be for the rest of the year. To make basil tea, use 1 tbsp. Basil Tea Instructions. Picking Basil. Basil is the herb of choice for many chefs thanks to the strong aromas it adds to various dishes. This is the easiest method, but you need to have a food dehydrator. Tea from fresh basil calls for twice as much of the herb. Remove any dead leaves and cut off the flowers. This article covers the basics of growing basil and the different methods of drying it. Treatment was carried out with samples in triplicate. Make sure you don’t get strong wind that would blow the leaves away. Just swirl them in the water to clean them then scoop them out. There are four ways to dry out fresh basil leaves. Can't use all your fresh basil during the season? For this reason, it’s often grown in the warm Southern regions of the country. Cover with another towel and another layer of leaves, to absorb any water in the creases of the leaves. Microwave Drying. Oven drying basil is a faster method but requires more supervision to make sure leaves don’t burn. Keep in mind that you cannot dry your whole harvest in one go using a microwave. J Agric.Food Chem. Repeat until all leaves are dry. In well draining soil, there are plenty of air spaces that allow air to circulate freely around the roots. Repotting your plant and removing all affected roots is essential, and you should take care to water conservatively after repotting so the plant has a chance to recover. One of the easiest ways to preserve basil is to freeze the basil leaves. There are 5 drying methods that work with basil leaves. Transfer blanched leaves immediately to the ice water bath. Simply dry basil leaves at approximately 95 degrees for 1 to 3 hours. The first method is time intensive but it produces a good harvest. Set the dehydrator to 95 degrees Fahrenheit and leave it running for anything between 12 and 24 hours. Repeat it a few times until the leaves are thoroughly dry. of dried basil and pour 1 cup of boiling water over it per serving. Simply put your dish cloth on a large cutting board or baking sheet for easy transport. Turn it on to its lowest temperature and leave it like that for 30 minutes then turn off the heat. Most experts recommend using twice as much fresh as you would dried basil. Put fresh basil leaves into a colander that fits into the pot (it’s important to have the basil in something so you can quickly remove it all at once). 3. Before you try to revive your plant, you must examine your plant and the growing conditions closely. Haworthia Succulent Care: Nurturing Your Haworthia Pearl Plant, Bunny Ear Cactus: Growing & Care For the Bunny Ears Succulent (Opuntia Microdasys). Place the basil leaves on a baking sheet. You can use your oven to dry basil leaves if you don’t have a food dehydrator and think the microwave is too much of a hassle. Visit our sister site PepperScale. It’s not weather reliant and you can do it just about any time you feel like. If you spot the problem early, the best thing to do is to stop watering and let the soil dry out. This process will take several hours to complete. These polyphenolic compounds give it its therapeutic values. You can use brown leaves in the bottom of sandwiches to add a little bit of basil flavor. Collect the dry leaves and keep them in jars. Presenting symptoms including stunting of growth, wilting, yellowing leaves, fungal deposits on stems and leaves, and rotting of stems. Although Basil plants like consistent access to water, their roots are poorly adapted to cope with soggy soil. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/articles/how-dry-herbs-microwave Crush the heads over the colander and pick out the old petals and any chaff. Most growers wait until the leaves are two or three inches in length before cutting. Make sure that is a true sweet basil smell and no weird licorice or other smell has crept in. Sun drying basil. As an experiment, Alex and I mixed up a batch of dried basil pesto using the same method of traditional basil pesto, substituting the dried basil for fresh. You may see crispy, brown leaves and some leaf drop, and the pot will be very light to lift. This can make the leaves appear more vibrantly green than normal, and you may think your plant is the picture of health. Bear in mind that overwatering can happen due to more than just watering too often. Drying the Basil: Put the sheets of basil in the dehydrator or oven. You can cut out the nasty-looking parts and add the bits and pieces to fresh salads. Temperature stress, lighting problems, disease, or pests are also common causes of a basil plant wilting or dying. Basil thrives at high temperatures. Let the leaves dry off after rinsing them. Place the basil leaves on a parchment-lined baking sheet, then place it on the upper rack of the oven. Bake them for 45 mins to an hour and remove them. Your email address will not be published. That's right, you can dry herbs in a microwave and it's pretty easy to do! Particularly pre-potted basil plants bought from the supermarket usually don’t last long. Enjoy your stay at Smart Garden Guide. As a dedicated gardener, nothing tastes better than the food you grow in your garden with your own heads. Before You Start. (Causes And Solutions), Rhipsalis Care - How To Grow Mistletoe Cactus, How To Get Rid Of Spider Mites On Houseplants, Peacock Plant Care - How To Care For Calathea Makoyana, You can read how to propagate new basil plants here, I’ve written an article about identifying and treating common houseplant bugs. Related Spicy food fan? Light reflected from colored mulches affects aroma and phenol content of sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum L.) leaves. Fertilizer: Basil is a heavy feeder, requiring some fertilization from time to … Allow basil to cool for an hour before storing in a paper bag or glass container. Blanched. If your Basil plant is growing inside, you will rarely have issues with the temperature, unless your plant is placed next to a drafty window. Keep the soil wet but not waterlogged during the dog days of summer. Fill a large bowl with ice and cold water. So making pesto with dried basil leaves, for instance, is not something you want to try out! For the end of the season harvesting, you can pluck all the leaves without worrying about the nodes or stems. Place another paper towel on top. You can allow the top 2 inches of the soil to go dry. Dried basil, on the other hand, tastes bitter and is a dull brown color. Mine took 50 minutes. Oils and Vinegars. So in a way, it’s the most convenient method so far. Basil seed collecting is that simple. I cut my larger leaves in half on the stem to help with the drying process. Simply dry basil leaves at approximately 95 degrees for 1 to 3 hours. It is sensitive to cold temperatures so the best way to grow it is inside a greenhouse where you have control over the temperature and humidity levels. One of the easiest methods to get the basil leaves dry is to simply leave them out in the … Triple Herb Stuffing Recipe For Christmas Season, 5 Best Potting Soil Brands: How To Choose The Right Mix For Your Garden, 15 DIY Herb Gardens To Grow Alongside Your Kiddos, Improve Air Quality And Sleep With An Air Purifiers for Bedrooms, Cumin Plant Care: How To Grow Cumin Herbs In Your Garden, Garlic Info: How To Grow And Harvest Garlic, Jade Plant Propagation – How to Plant and Care for Jade Plants, 10 Indoor Herb Gardens That Will Test Your Green Thumb. You don’t have to do anything, just be patient enough to let them dry out thoroughly. Roughly chop the basil to make it smaller and feasible to fit in a 4oz jar. One of the best ways for drying the basil leaves is the microwave oven can also be used to dry herbs like basil. Remove the stems once the herb is dried. You could also use a mortar and pestle. Can't use all your fresh basil during the season? Don’t handle the leaves roughly since they break easily. Simply put your dish cloth … Bake for 2-4 hours, until the leaves are crumbly. Read this article for instructions on how to propagate Basil. You can read how to propagate new basil plants here. This is thanks to flavonoids and anthocyanins. Use a large pot since the roots of the basil plant don’t do well in shallow pots. Any factor that reduces root aeration or causes the soil to remain soggy will cause the same issue. Cut off the brown and spent flower heads and let them dry for a few days in a warm, dry location. The technique is similar to solar or sun drying basil. After they’ve dried up, pull them out one by one and set them aside to cool off. I would advise disposing of the soil and sterilizing the pot thoroughly before growing anything else in it. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until basil leaves are dried and can easily crumble. So, for example: 2 teaspoons fresh equals 1 teaspoon dried Dry in Air. As the temperature rises, the plant needs more water. Drying herbs in the microwave. Overwatering is the most common cause for your Basil plant dying. Picking Basil. Make sure to remove the last leaves before the temperature drops again in the fall. Keep the leaves away from each other so they don’t stick together. It’s right next to where two leaves grow in opposite directions. As a summer herb, you might wonder how to enjoy the great flavors of basil all year round. If air drying and the sun methods are too time-consuming for you and you’re in a hurry, then a microwave can come to your rescue. Pluck the leaves off and place in a roasting pan. Place basil leaves on a baking sheet, making sure the leaves don’t overlap. A food dehydrator is an effective way to dry your basil without the drawbacks that come with using the microwave. Preheat your oven at the lowest temperature. Go now. Inside, the biggest culprits are aphids and spider mites. If you hold your hand up in an area of bright, indirect light, your hand should cast a shadow with a fuzzy border. You don’t have to check on it since the dehydrator is gentle on the leaves and you don’t have to flip them over or give them a break the way the microwave method requires. Basil, especially if you save your own seeds, can sometimes grow into a weird variety. Food Dehydrator. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until basil leaves are dried … To make basil tea, use 1 tbsp. One of the easiest methods to get the basil leaves dry is to simply leave them out in the open air to dry on their own. The basil should easily crumble upon touching. Lay the basil out on the dehydrator racks, leaving space between them for the air to circulate, and only one leaf thick on each rack. The roots establish well in plenty of soil. Just pinch them off at the stem and breathe in the intoxicating aroma of sun-warmed, fresh basil. One advantage of using the microwave in drying basil is that it dries out the leaves but preserves its natural green color and most of the flavor, unlike the other drying techniques. Water your Basil plant thoroughly to help revive it. When growing basil outside, make sure all risk of frost is gone before you sow seeds or move your plants outside. Anaerobic conditions in the soil of your basil plant weaken the roots and allow opportunistic organisms to attack the roots of your plant. Remove basil from oven and crumble in bowl. If you are happy with the quality of the plant, go ahead and start harvesting. Sometimes, lighting problems can be a cause of a basil plant dying. This fungal infection attacks the plant, blocking xylem vessels, preventing the transport of water and nutrients through the plant. DFJ will show you how to easily and quickly dry and store your basil for use all year round. I’ve tried several methods, including hanging bunches of stems, drying basil leaves in my dehydrator, and even using a terracotta flower press. Each 100 g blanched and unblanched samples were uniformly spread in wire basket for fluidized bed dryer and dried at the desired temperature. If your plant is wilting badly, or if the roots are smelly or mushy, then you have root rot, and the chances of the plant surviving are pretty low. There’s no need to worry about your Basil dying when you can just take a few cuttings and propagate them in soil or water. Pizza made from scratch, pasta or homemade pesto simply can’t go without it. Why is my Basil plant dying? Baking ovens typically don’t go lower than 150°F (65°C) so I don’t recommend using them to dry herbs. Older Basil plants will commonly develop woody lower stems. The thing about basil is that it’s easy to grow once you provide the basic requirements of soil, warm temperature, and dry weather. Then wash clean and dry them with a towel. The easiest way is in the oven: Remove basil leaves from the stem, wash, and pat dry with a paper towel. Dry the baking sheets of basil in the oven for about 2 hours, checking more frequently towards the end to ensure they do not burn. Dip the colander with leaves into the boiling water for just 3-5 seconds. You only need to be extra cautious when doing this procedure and make sure that the leaves or the paper towel do not catch fire. For an even quicker drying session without any special equipment, use your home oven to prepare your basil leaf harvest. Nothing says you know your way around the kitchen, and the garden for that matter, than a sprig of basil in your homemade lasagna or a few leaves floating majestically in your bowl of punch. Wilting of the leaves soon follows and you may notice an offensive smell from the soil. The first sign of cold damage is usually wilted leaves, or leaves that begin to curl and dry around the edges. Prune the plant to encourage it to branch out and become bushy. To dry your basil leaves in the sun, you follow the same steps of parsing, washing, and drying the leaves we mentioned above. It’s arguably the most important one because it can make or break the freshness, flavors, and depth of aroma of your basil harvest. This is possibly the easiest problem to fix. Pick, wash and clean the basil. Steep the tea for 30 minutes, or to taste. Gently wash basil leaves in cool water taking care not to damage the leaves. You can dry these leaves and add them to your Italian spice mix. The first step in drying basil is to pick it from the garden. Gently wash basil leaves in cool water taking care not to damage the leaves. The only drawback here is that it would take longer than with the microwave. There is no set time, but what you are looking for is dry leaves … Lay out leaves in a single layer, making sure that none are overlapping. Place the wet leaves on a clean dish cloth and allow to air dry on the counter. The leaves of young Basil plants tend to have the best flavor, so it is a good idea to propagate your Basil plant every few months so you always have a frresh supply of Basil on your windowsill. Why Is My Basil Plant Dying? Storing Dried Basil Leaves. Don’t be afraid to pick a little bit more than you usually use, you can freeze it for later use. Light reflected from colored mulches affects aroma and phenol content of sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum L.) leaves. Full sun is great for most of the year but can be a little much in the heat of the summer, so watch for scorched or crispy leaves, which should be a sign to move it back from the window. Leave about a quarter-inch below the node and cut the stems. How to Dry Fresh Basil Leaves: Place 1 paper towel flat on your plate Lay out Basil Leaves in a single layer on the paper towel. Ovens and dehydrators can also be used for drying basil. No matter how quickly the basil dried, the leaves still came out tasting like tired spinach and ended up in the compost heap. So patience is required. If you’re running into problems and your Basil plant is dying, this article will help you identify the cause and fix your plant. Fresh or dry, basil is the kind of herb that adds a strong flavor to your pizzas, pasta, and even serves as a garnish to your lemonade. Either gather the adult leaves as they mature on the plant and dry them in patches, or wait for the end of the summer and gather all the leaves together in one patch. Check them every minute and remove any that are dry to prevent burning. Pick your Basil: Picking is important to stimulate plant growth and thin out the plant so all the leaves have maximum sun exposure. Too much water can be even more harmful than too little water. The most traditional and perhaps easiest and most economical way of drying basil is air … Potted basil, especially pots kept outdoors, dry more quickly and may require daily watering.