Optionally, start indoors in containers 4-6 weeks before last frost. Keep seedlings >70F. Harden off then transplant to, or sow, in fertile, moist, well-draining soil in full sun after all frost passes in Spring and soil is >50F. Move the plants carefully from the pots or flats and set them in the transplant holes. Set the transplants slightly deeper that it had been growing, burying some of the stem in the ground. Pack the soil loosely around the plant. Leave a slightly sunken area around each plant to hold water. Water the plants after planting. Or, plant 1/4 inch in soil after danger of frost has passed in Spring in at least 70F temperature, well-draining soil. Seeds can be sown year-round in pots. Staking the plants can prevent them from collapsing in adverse weather. Pinch out leaves as you need them and remove flower heads to keep plants producing vigorous leaves.
Watering: Water plants moderately. If the soil moisture is low, water but avoid waterlogging soil.
Weeding: Keep plants free of weeds, which rob weak root systems of nutrients and moisture.
Insecticides: Insecticides may be used to protect plants. Bt-based insecticides and sulfur are organic options that can be used for prevention. Sevin is a synthetic option. Sulfur also has fungicidal properties and helps in controlling many diseases. Before using a pesticide, please read the label and always follow cautions, warnings and directions.
Diseases: Disease can happen in cloudy, damp weather. Check plants daily and treat with an approved fungicide if diseases do appear. Neem oil, sulfur, and other fungicides are available for use. Please always follow label directions.
Holy Basil is harvested when flowering begins but the plant can be harvested at any stage of growth. Trim often throughout the growing season to keep basil plants bushy. Harvest whole plants by cutting plants 4-6 inches above the ground.