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Little River Cooperative

African Blue Basil

Regular price $12.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $12.00 USD
Sale Sold out

African Blue Basil
Ocimum basilicum

days to maturity:
plant spacing: 1 plant every 2 feet
sunlight requirements: 8-14 hours
look out for: aphids, leaf miners
harvest notes: harvest frequently to keep flush green growth

African blue basil is by far our favorite basil variety to grow down here in hot, humid Tropical South Florida. The flavor of this basil is most similar to Thai Basil, but it has its own unique flavor profile with typical basil characteristics. You definitely wont be making pesto out of this herb but you can use it in Thai cooking, make an anise-flavored tea out of it, plus its great for herbal steams, potpourri, burn bundles and it has lots of medical uses. Even if you plant this and don’t eat up loving the flavor in your cooking you wont regret having it around as it literally comes alive with pollinators when in full bloom. Flowering branches also great make material for floral arrangements, since they will stay fresh for a long time and the leaves have a purplish tint to them. 

Medicinally, it’s a powerful carminative that will aid in the digestive process, plus its antibacterial, anti fungal and has high levels of antioxidants. Also very rich in essential oils, like eugenol, citriol and limalool. Our favorite tropical herbalist, The Garden Jules, says: “this is one of my favorite herbs to infuse in oil along with garlic and rosemary for cooking or to infuse in distilled white vinegar along with lemongrass as a house cleaner spray. The rich essential oil content makes this herb great as a natural insect repellant as well. I love to make Hydrosols and tincture it in organic witch hazel and then blend the two together for a natural mosquito spray.  You can simply burn the dried leaves and stalks to keep mosquitos away too. Also helpful for toothaches and hair growth, the leaves and flowers can be made into a strong infusion and then used as a mouth wash or hair rinse respectively.”

African Blue Basil is a very unique variety of basil bred by botanists to bear no seeds, bypassing the plants instinct to reproduce and die. Basil is notorious for going to seed quickly (bolting) and usually has to be replanted for continuous harvest. But African Blue Basil grows year round! It does produce prolific and beautiful, edible, dark purple flowers, but it will outgrow them and branch out into new shoots. Because it doesn’t go to seed this basil can get big, measuring in at 4 feet around when unmanaged. We’ve noticed this plant responds very well to hard pruning, keeping it full of fresh new growth and preventing it from falling over and becoming a monstrous messy plant. 


All of our plants are produced using OMRI certified organic materials (potting mix, fertilizer & pesticides) however our nursery is not certified organic. Plants are shipped in compostable peat moss pots and we use heirloom & organic seeds whenever possible.

Shipping & Returns

We ship plant orders every Monday. Due to the nature of shipping plants we only offer expedited shipping for our live plant orders. Our returns & exchanges policy is also quite strict since its hard to control the quality of a plant once it leaves our facility, however we do our very best to make sure that each and every customer is satisfied with their plants. Read more about our policies here. 


All of our plants are potted in 4" pots and their foliage size varies based on how large the plant is naturally when its root ball is the correct size for the pot. If a plant is too tall for our shipping box we may prune it to fit (bonus: many plants do better after being pruned since they make bushier growth). We do our very best to ship all of our plants in the "sweet spot" of maturity however so long as the roots have colonized the pot we will consider a plant mature enough to ship.

Care Instructions

When you receive your plant its critical to get it out of its box and into the light the day it arrives. It will also want to be removed from its compostable plastic wrapping and given fresh water to drink. Keep in mind, this plant was grown in the tropical humid climate of South Florida, so if it's terribly cold or dry where you are it'll need to be hardened off before planting outdoors. Visit our care instructions page for more thorough info about caring for your new plant friend.

  • What Our Customers Have to Say:

    This is a great, local organization with really knowledgeable & friendly staff. They make gardening easy and accessible, and I've purchased many high quality plants and equipment from them.
    -Kate Black (5 star google review)

  • And Another One:

    How lucky we are to have a resource like Little River Cooperative here in Miami, not only for the access they offer to a great selection of plants and produce, but also for the knowledge they provide and the sense of community they foster!
    -Nick Vagnoni (5 star google review)