Cardinal Organic

Cardinal Organic

SKU: HR1022
Upright plants grow to 60cm (25") tall, with strongly aromatic, oval leaves, and growth so vigorous no pinching is needed. Cardinal is very useful as a culinary basil, but wait until it blooms! Read More

Exposure Full-sun

Season Warm season

Shipping & Returns

West Coast Seeds ships anywhere in North America. However, we are not able to ship garlic, potatoes, asparagus crowns, bulbs, onion sets, Mason bee cocoons, or nematodes outside of Canada. We regret, we cannot accept returns or damages for orders outside of Canada. The minimum shipping charge to the US is $6.99.

More details about Cardinal Organic

Cardinal Organic basil seeds are CERTIFIED ORGANIC! Upright plants grow to 60cm (25") tall, with strongly aromatic, oval leaves, and growth so vigorous no pinching is needed. Cardinal is very useful as a culinary basil, but wait until it blooms! Dark scarlet flowers make this variety such a show-stopper that it will dominate your herb bed or flower border. In mid-summer the plants are crowned by surprisingly tall pagoda shaped flower clusters that are fragrant and attractive to pollinators. Grow some Cardinal Organic basil in containers in your patio herb garden and enjoy the flavour and colour all summer long. Basil prefers warm weather and full sun.

Quick Facts:

    • So vigorous, no pinching is needed
    • Great in containers or raised beds
    • Dark scarlet flowers
    • Upright plants to 60cm (25") tall
    • Certified Organic

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All About Cardinal Organic

Latin

Latin
Ocimum basilicum, Holy basil is O. tenuiflora.
Family: Lamiaceae

Difficulty

Difficulty
Easy

We Recommend

We Recommend: Certified Organic Genovese Basil (HR1019). This is the standard by which to compare all of the other fine basil varieties. Traditional, heirloom, Italian basil is the best choice for pesto.
For Urban Gardeners: Certified Organic Dolly Basil (HR1025) has all the aroma of Genovese, but with slightly larger leaves, faster growth, and a better tolerance of the cool nighttime temperatures that can occur on balconies and rooftop gardens. It’s also slightly better suited for container growing.

Season:

Season: Warm season
Exposure: Full sun

Timing

Timing
Basil grows well in containers indoors at any time of year provided you can supply enough light. For outdoor growing, sow basil seeds throughout late spring for transplanting to the garden after the summer solstice. Or direct sow in early summer, once the soil has warmed up. Basil requires warm soil and full sun. Optimal temperature for germination: 21°C (70°F). Seeds should sprout in 5-10 days.

Starting

Starting
Sow seeds 1cm (½”) deep in sterilized seed starting mix. Basil is prone to damping off, so once seeds sprout, make sure they are adequately ventilated, and kept under very bright light. Thin to 20-25cm (8-10″) apart. Using bottom heat speeds germination.

Growing

Growing
Use any rich, loose, well drained soil. Once plants are 15cm (6″) tall, pinch out the growing tips to encourage really bushy growth prior to harvest. Watch for signs of flower buds forming in mid-summer, and pinch these off to promote more foliage.

Harvest

Harvest
Frequent harvesting will prolong the life of the plant. Basil leaves have the best flavour just before the plant flowers, and if you plan to preserve some of your basil or make a big batch of pesto, this is the best time to harvest. Flowering can be delayed by pinching or clipping off new flower buds.

Tear basil rather than chop with a knife because chopping tends to bruise the leaves. Add basil to food just before serving so as to get the full aroma and effect. Cooking for any length tends to make the minty side of basil come to the forefront.

Basil is best fresh, but can be preserved by drying or by freezing. To freeze, tear the leaves into small pieces and freeze small batches of them, with water, in ice cube trays. Once frozen, the cubes can be saved in zip-lock type bags and labeled for later use. This will preserve the fresh flavour of basil for up to four months.

Seed Info

Seed Info
Usual seed life: 3 years.

Companion Planting

Companion Planting
Basil is said to improve vigour and flavour of tomatoes, planted side-by-side. It's also good with asparagus, oregano, and peppers. Basil helps repel flies, mosquitoes, and thrips.

More on Companion Planting.

How to Grow Basil

Step 1: Timing

Basil grows well in containers indoors at any time of year provided you can supply enough light. For outdoor growing, sow basil seeds throughout late spring for transplanting to the garden after the summer solstice. Or direct sow in early summer, once the soil has warmed up. Basil requires warm soil and full sun. Optimal temperature for germination: 21°C (70°F). Seeds should sprout in 5-10 days.

Step 2: Starting

Sow seeds 1cm (½”) deep in sterilized seed starting mix. Basil is prone to damping off, so once seeds sprout, make sure they are adequately ventilated, and kept under very bright light. Thin to 20-25cm (8-10″) apart. Using bottom heat speeds germination.

Step 3: Growing

Use any rich, loose, well drained soil. Once plants are 15cm (6″) tall, pinch out the growing tips to encourage really bushy growth prior to harvest. Watch for signs of flower buds forming in mid-summer, and pinch these off to promote more foliage.

Step 4: Germination

Usual seed life: 3 years.

Step 5: Harvest

Frequent harvesting will prolong the life of the plant. Basil leaves have the best flavour just before the plant flowers, and if you plan to preserve some of your basil or make a big batch of pesto, this is the best time to harvest. Flowering can be delayed by pinching or clipping off new flower buds.

Tear basil rather than chop with a knife because chopping tends to bruise the leaves. Add basil to food just before serving so as to get the full aroma and effect. Cooking for any length tends to make the minty side of basil come to the forefront.

Basil is best fresh, but can be preserved by drying or by freezing. To freeze, tear the leaves into small pieces and freeze small batches of them, with water, in ice cube trays. Once frozen, the cubes can be saved in zip-lock type bags and labeled for later use. This will preserve the fresh flavour of basil for up to four months.

Tips!

Companion Planting: Basil is said to improve vigour and flavour of tomatoes, planted side-by-side. It's also good with asparagus, oregano, and peppers. Basil helps repel flies, mosquitoes, and thrips.

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