Picture of basil plant in long jar

How to Grow Basil in Water Indoors? (In Simple Steps)

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If you are having any trouble while growing basil indoors, do not worry. Today, I will be teaching you 8 tips on how to grow basil in water.

Growing basil in water is indeed a difficult process.

These tips have made it possible to harvest basil within 2 weeks of time.

So, either you are a beginner or a pro at gardening, you can grow basil easily and in less time by following the tips I have included below.

picture of basil plant from top view

The demand for fresh and useful herbs is increasing day by day. With the increase in demand, the price of these herbs has also hiked.

Just a bottle of herbs at the store would cost you more than $5.

Isn’t it ridiculous?

For a herb that you can grow easily in a cup, you are paying more than 5 dollars. If you ask me, this is not a fair deal.

So, I recommend you to grow the herbs yourself in your home. Let’s start our gardening of herbs with basil which is easy to grow.

Now, let’s start our content by knowing about basil. Shall we?

About Basil

picture of indoor gardening of basil plant

Basil is a popular aromatic herb that is native to the tropical regions of Asia. Especially, the leaves of this herb are used in both culinary as well as the medicinal world.

Basils are also known as “King of the herbs” – Did you know that?

Many people are confused if basil and mint are the same.

No, they are not. They are completely different in their appearances. One looks sleek and smooth while the other looks rougher and textured.

You can easily distinguish them through their smell.

Basil tastes like mint, anise, and pepper with a balance of sweet and savory. It is more pungent and strong in taste.

Why grow basil in water?

picture of basil plant in water jar

Basil is a pretty versatile herb that can grow both inland as well as in water.

If you are like me who is lazy to clean up after handling the soil, you can easily grow basil in water.

All the tools you will be needing are a jar or a glass to grow basil in water.

Just remember:

If you want to grow basil in water, you need to use cuttings instead of seeds. The seeds wouldn’t germinate without soil.

How to Grow Basil in Water?

Here are the indoor gardening tips on how to grow basil in water:

#1 Start with a cutting

picture of hands cutting basil plant

So, the first tip is to have a proper cutting of the mature basil plant.

Choose a healthy plant and cut the branch at an angle just below the leaf node.

The length of the cutting should be about 4 inches (10 cm) in length.

You can also visit your local gardener for the perfect cutting.

#2 Prepare the Cutting

Picture of hands removing the leaves from stem

Your cutting of the branch will now serve as the stem of the new plant.

While preparing the cutting, remove all the leaves from the cutting about 2 inches (5 cm) from the end.

During this preparation of cutting, you need to give extra care to them. Cuttings will be very weak to any damages.

#3 Prepare the water

Picture of water splashing

You can use any water – filtered, spring, or even tap water for growing basil.

One thing to note:

You should not use any chlorinated water. If you are using water with chlorine, leave it for 24 hours.

This will allow for chlorine to evaporate.

#4 Place the cutting in waterPlant cutting in water jar

Once you have prepared your cutting and water, now you need to place the cutting in water to grow.

Fill the prepared water in a transparent jar or glass by about 2/3rd of the volume. The jar should be big enough for the plant to grow.

Make sure that the top leaves of the cuttings are not submerged underwater.

Care for basil plant

By following these four steps you should now be able to plant the basil in water.

But remember:

Many people only know about planting the basil in water.

Knowing how to plant is not enough. You should provide proper care for the plant while it grows.

A common question among many is How do you keep basil alive in water?

Well, after planting, you need to provide proper care to the plant.

Let’s discuss how to keep basil alive in water:

#1 Placement of the jarPots places in sunlight

Just like any other herbs, basil also needs moisture and sunlight for proper growth.

The ideal time for the plant to be in sunlight is about 6 hours per day.

So, you need to place your jar in a place like a window shell.

#2 Watering the plantPicture of hands watering the plant

After determining the proper placement for the plant, watering is all the care basil requires while growing in water.

Basil can thrive best in clean and fresh water free of any algae and bacteria.

So, you need to keep on changing the water every couple of days.

#3 Temperature and HumidityPicture of thermometer

Do you want a healthy and proper grown basil?

These factors are important for the growth of basil in water. Maintain the humidity level between 40-60%.

Basil grows well in warm temperatures. They are productive and healthy at a temperature between 50-80F.

If the temperature is freezing (below 32F), the basil will likely die.

#4 Fertilizer

Using fertilizer for the water plants

Obviously, you are growing basil in water. So, there won’t be sufficient nutrients for the plant to grow as it does in soil.

You need to add a balanced amount of fertilizer to the water if you want the productive growth of basil.

Add about 1 gram of balanced NPK fertilizer in a 20-20-20 ratio for every liter of water. This would do wonders for growing healthy basil in water.


picture of a grown basil plant

A new basil plant from the cuttings would be ready in no time if you have followed the above tips on how to grow basil in water.

The leaves will grow and can be harvested in a week or two. If you do not want to harvest it within a couple of weeks, it is also fine.

You can wait and harvest the leaves well after 4 weeks.

While harvesting, make sure that you cut off the leaves in the morning after the dew has been evaporated and the day temperature starts to increase.

Do you want to continue growing and harvesting the basil plant?

Here’s how you can continue growing basil:

The best thing about basil plants is that they are productive all year round.

You can cut the branches from your grown plant and again plant them in different jars.

Basil uses

Basil dish

Nutritionally speaking, basil is rich in vitamins. It contains vitamins A, B6, C, and K. Basil also contains other nutrients like iron, manganese, and magnesium.

Here’s the important part:

Basils can be used both in fresh or dry form.

They play a crucial role in Italian and many Mediterranean cuisines. They are used for adding flavor to meals such as meats, fish, salads, and sauces.

Basil can be used for treating snakebites, inflammation, and cold. They are also used in diet as essential herbal medicine and oil.

According to research by Muhammad Asif Hanif and his team, they found that basil is useful as a ritualistic plant, insecticides, anticancer activity, radioprotective activity, and many more.

(Click here to view the full report of the research).


So, you can follow these above tips on how to grow basil in water for growing the basil healthy.

Basil is one of the most used herbs and is very demandable. You can economically start gardening this plant too.

It is used in various cuisine worlds and is also used for medicinal purposes.

I suggest you try basil with tomato-based dishes like pizza, and pasta.

Here’s a fact about basil:

In Nepal, people worship the basil plant as a god.

If you are interested in growing indoor plants in water, check our content onĀ 20 Awesome Plants That Grow in Water.

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