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Growing basil indoors in the winter

Basil roots

Potted basilEvery time I go over to Mark's mom's house, I'm impressed by the thriving basil in her kitchen window. In my experience, basil isn't thrilled by winter conditions even indoors. So I asked for tips on keeping this tender herb alive in March.

"The trick," Rose Nell told me, "is lots of water." She places the basil's pot inside a cup, which she keeps at least halfway full of water. Roots expand out from the pot into the water, in essence turning the growing space into a bit of a hydroponics setup.

And it works! The proof is in the pudding...or rather, in the roasted potatoes and salads seasoned with fresh herbs in January, and February, and March. Maybe next winter I'll give it a try, but for now I'm content inviting myself over to enjoy someone else's hard work.



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