How Long Does It Take A Basil Plant To Grow?

Do you want to know how long it takes for a basil plant to grow? Basil is a fast-growing herb that thrives in warm weather. In most climates, you can expect to see new growth within two-three weeks of planting your seeds or starter plants. 

However, in this blog post, we will discuss how long it takes to grow and provide tips on caring for your basil plants to increase and thrive!

How Long Does Basil Take To Grow?

Basil is a popular herb known for its aromatic and flavorful leaves. The leaves are used in various dishes, from pesto to pasta sauce. Basil is a frost-tender annual herb, which means that it cannot tolerate cold temperatures. 

In the United States, basil is typically planted in the spring, after the last frost has passed. Basil can be grown indoors or outdoors. 

True and Seed Leaves

As any gardener knows, the first leaves that grow from seed are usually very tender and delicate. These leaves, known as seed leaves, are vital to the plant’s survival, as they help convert sunlight into energy. 

While seed leaves may be delicate, they play a vital role in a plant’s life. 

A basil seed needs a specific combination of conditions to germinate and grow: bright light, moist soil, and warmth. 

However, if these conditions are not met, the seed will not sprout. For example, if the seed is placed in too much shade, it will not receive enough light to trigger germination. Similarly, if the soil is too dry, the seed will not be able to absorb enough moisture to begin growing. If the temperature is too cold, the seed will not be able to generate the energy needed for growth. 

After a seed has been planted, the first thing that starts to grow is the root system. Once the roots have had a chance to establish themselves, the plant will begin to sprout leaves. These first leaves, known as cotyledons, are typically small and round. 

The seedling will produce its second set of leaves after establishing roots. These second leaves, known as true leaves, are typically more extensive and symmetrical than the cotyledons. 

Seed Growth Timing

If you live in an area with a warm climate, you can start planting basil outdoors as early as late winter or early spring. If you live in a colder climate, starting your basil seeds indoors is best, and transplant them outside once the weather warms up. By taking this approach, you’ll give your basil plants the best chance of surviving and thriving. 

So if you’re eager to get your hands on fresh basil, remember to start your seeds indoors in late winter or early spring.

The process of germination can be fascinating to watch. Seeds that have been dormant for months suddenly come to life, pushing their way through the soil as they begin to grow. 

For basil seeds, this process takes eight to fourteen days. The first signs of growth are small white roots, followed by green shoots. Two to three weeks later, the first leaves emerge. At this point, the seedlings are ready to be transplanted into individual pots or the garden. 

Given the right conditions, these tiny seedlings will quickly grow into full-blown basil plants.

Before transplanting, water the plants thoroughly and wait for the soil to drain. Gently remove each plant from its pot, taking care not to damage the roots. When the basil plants are about 6 inches tall, they are ready to be transplanted into the ground.

Indoor Basil Seeds

When you are ready to start your seeds indoors, the first step is to fill a seed flat with a sterile damp seed-starting mix or seed-starting compost. This will provide a warm, moist environment for your seeds to germinate. 

Once you have filled the flat, gently press the mix and water it lightly. After sowing, cover the flat with a sheet of clear plastic or a propagation lid to create a mini-greenhouse effect. 

Place the flat in a warm spot out of direct sunlight (temperature of around 70 degrees Fahrenheit), and keep an eye on the moisture levels, watering as needed to keep the mix moist but not wet. 

In 7-14 days, your seeds should begin to germinate. Once they have sprouted, remove the cover and move the flat to a sunny location. 

Keep the soil moist and provide gentle ventilation by opening the windows on warm days. With proper care, your seedlings will be ready to transplant in 4-6 weeks.

Seedling Transplantation

Once your seedlings have grown a second set of leaves, transplant them into larger pots. The important thing is to ensure that the pots you’re using are large enough to accommodate the roots. 

If the roots are cramped, they won’t be able to absorb enough nutrients, and the seedlings will become stunted. When transplanting, handle the seedlings carefully and water them well afterward. 

Gardeners know that transplanting can be a tricky business. If done correctly, it can boost young plants, helping them spread their roots and grow faster. 

Gardeners should wait until the plant is well-rooted before transplanting for the best results. The roots should be thick and healthy, and the plant should be showing signs of growth. 

Once the plant is ready to be transplanted, the gardener should dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball. The hole should be deep enough to level the root ball with the surrounding soil. Once the plant is in the hole, the gardener should backfill it with soil and water. 


Another thing to remember is that basil seedlings must be kept from cold temperatures until they are 6 inches tall, usually around six weeks after planting.

It is essential to wait to transplant Basil seedlings until after the last frost date in your area. If you do not stay long enough, the frost will damage the leaves and stems, making it difficult for the plant to recover. 

Basil is a heat-loving plant that can even be damaged by light frost. Once the weather warms up, and all danger of frost has passed, basil can be transplanted into the garden or potted and placed on a sunny windowsill. 

Bottom Line

So, how long does it take a basil plant to grow? With the right conditions and some TLC (tender, love, and care) mentioned above in detail, it takes about six weeks after planting.

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