This type of basil is used throughout the Mediterranean, having been brought from the East by travellers many centuries ago. Hippocrates believed basil was beneficial to the heart. Greek basil has a tight, compact growing habit and a more subtle, sweeter taste than its Italian counterpart. However it is used in both Italian and Greek dishes where a fresh and slightly spicy flavour is required. It is great for serving with tomatoes, seafood or in Greek salads or for making basil sauces.
Annual/perennial. All basils are tender and cannot tolerate cold. For perennial plants, sow seed in seed compost in pots, 1cm deep, from February to July. When plants are large enough to handle transplant into larger pots of potting compost and place on a sunny windowsill. For the most fragrant basil, treat as annuals in summer and sow direct into the ground in a sunny position.