Since my AeroGarden produces way more basil than I typically use, I decided I will try to propagate Genovese and Thai basil to plant outside. I did some research on the internet and it seemed simple enough.
As I trimmed back the herbs, I took long stems of the basil as far down from the leaf node as I could. Then I placed the stems in a glass, changed out the water every two to three days, placed them next to the AeroGarden for light (a bright window sill will work too), and waited. And waited. For what seemed like an eternity.
I noticed small black bumps on the stems of the Genovese basil. Then one day a black bump became a small white root.
Three weeks later and ready to pot.
A few days before I potted my first round of basil, I trimmed back my mother plant and started a second round. Roots appeared within days. This is what they look like a week later.
You can see that roots are ready to sprout all the way up the stems of the basil cuttings.
And here is lemon basil that I trimmed from two plants that I bought from the garden center before I placed them in the garden. These cutting developed roots within a week.
And then there is the Thai basil. Very sad. I got some pathetic roots but nothing significant. The submerged ends keep turning brown and slimy.
The second round of Genovese basil was ready for potting mid April.
So far I have turned one basil plant into 10 new ones. The first four are ready to be transplanted. I was also able to propagate three rosemary plants (so far) from about 50 clippings I took from my mother’s garden using basically the same technique. I cut new growth (green not brown) of the rosemary bush, stripped the bottom two inches of leaves, and placed them in water until roots developed. Of note, I have only been successful rooting rosemary outdoors.
The lemon basil is coming along slowly and I may have my first thriving Thai basil plant soon. I am also rooting some mint (from the garden) and lemon grass (ends from ones I bought from the store and used in soup).
You are supposed to be able to regrow store bought basil. Give it a try. I have had tons of fun and satisfaction with this endeavor. Happy gardening.