How Often Should You Water Basil [+Growing Tips]

Are you wondering How Often Should You Water Basil? Here is a quick and easy guide as well as tips to keep your basil happy and hydrated!

Basil is one of the easiest herbs to look after in your garden. It is also one of the most commonly used herbs in cooking and can help to take your dish to the next level.

However, if you are new to growing basil and want to ensure that your plants are able to thrive in your garden, you will of course be wondering how often should you water basil?

The answer to this question will of course depend on:

  • 1. What stage of development the basil is at
  • 2. Whether it is planted in your garden or in a container

The general rule of thumb is that your basil will want the soil to be wet, but not too soggy. If the soil is left to be too soggy, this can cause mildew and rot, which will of course have a detrimental impact on your basil.

Your basil will need a consistent level of moisture in order to grow healthily. You should aim to water your basil with an inch of water at least once a week. You will need to water the earth around the basil roots deeply so that the soil is moist, but not soggy.

If you’re not sure whether your basil needs watering, stick your finger into the earth. If it’s dry, then your basil will need watering. It’s also worth noting that basil kept in containers will need to be watered more regularly.

If you have basil seedlings, you will find it more beneficial to mist the basil every other day. This is because smaller seedlings can’t cope with the same amount of water as an established plant.


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To grow healthy, tasty basil plants, use organic compost/fertilizer when preparing your herb bed!

How Often Should You Water Basil

Can Basil Be Overwatered?

Yes, basil can be overwatered. Basil is just like any other plant. Even though it is super easy to care for, it is perfectly possible to overwater it. Your basil will want to live in moist soil that isn’t soggy.

It needs a consistent level of moisture in order to thrive, no matter whether you’ve planted the annual in your garden or in containers. 

It will be crucial to ensure that container plants have sufficient drainage so that excess water can escape. Giving your basil plant a thorough soaking once a week should be more than enough moisture to help it thrive.

When choosing seeds for your herb garden, make sure you purchase high quality, organic, Non-GMO, Open-pollinated seeds!

How Often Should You Water Basil

You will need to ensure that the soil has had time to dry out in between each watering you give your basil. This is because the roots need air in order to breathe. If the basil’s roots aren’t able to breathe because the ground is too soggy, this can suffocate them.

How Do I Know If My Basil Is Overwatered?

Your basil should tell you if it’s being overwatered. It will do this through drooping, wilted leaves, yellow leaves that slowly work their way up the plant, stunted growth, or an unpleasant odour emanating from the soil. 

Use a moisture meter to ensure your plant is not overwatered!

How Often Should You Water Basil

If you were to remove the plants from its container, you may also notice that the roots appear to be brown or black in color. These are all signs that your basil has been overwatered. Overwatering your basil plant can cause the roots to rot.

How Often Should You Water Basil

You can tackle overwatering by allowing the soil to fully dry out before you water it again. You may need to stop watering it entirely until the plant starts to look healthier. It will be crucial to remove any brown or yellow leaves, as this can help to improve your basil plant use its energy for other things.

If large sections of your plant are brown or yellow, then you should prune it to above the second set of leaves. This will help your plant to focus on growing healthy roots.

Note– If you want to make your green fingers happier and your life easier, you can use this affordable 83 pieces ultimate gardening set to help you garden like a pro!

How Do You Water Indoor Basil Plants?

Trying to get the balance just right for your watering schedule will be important for keeping your indoor basil plant alive. It will still need regular watering, just like outdoor basil will.

Plants in containers notoriously need to be watered more frequently because the soil tends to dry out much quicker than outdoor plants planted in flowerbeds.

Your indoor basil plant will need to be watered once a week. Make sure to give your basil enough water so that it drains out the bottom of the plant and into the saucer you have in place to catch any excess water.

Towards the end of the week, check the moisture of the soil. If it feels incredibly dry, then you may need to water your basil twice a week, or three times a fortnight.

Should You Water Basil Every day?

The short answer is that no, you shouldn’t water basil every day. This is because even though your basil needs consistent moisture, too much water will cause the soil to be soggy, and will eventually lead to root rot and other issues. 

You will be better off watering your basil once a week and only giving it around 1 inch of water. The best time to water your basil will be first thing in the morning, as this will allow the water time to penetrate the soil and get absorbed by the roots of your basil before it has a chance to evaporate.

Use a seed germination kit to yield a higher successful germination rate!

How Often Should You Water Basil

In Summary

So there you have it! Your basil will need to be watered only once a week. It will thrive off consistent watering, but you will need to ensure that the soil has a chance to fully dry out before you water it again.

This is because the soil will become soggy if it isn’t allowed to drain properly, which will cause root rot, mildew, and many other issues. This will all basically mean that your basil plant doesn’t get the oxygen it needs around its roots to grow healthily.

Remember that basil grown in containers will need more frequent watering than basil planted outdoors. Seedlings will also need to be misted every other day instead of weekly watering, as they won’t be able to cope with the larger amount of water.

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