Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Mother's Day: Basil Bounty

My mamos was a major plant lover. When she died, there were over a hundred bits of greenery planted in all sorts of wackery in her lovely homespace nestled into the corner of a stucco-ugly condo. There were plants in pots and bowls and jar. Plants in cowboy boots, old flour tins and glass bottles. To amp things up a bit, mamos was fond of the paint and glitter effect so other everyday planters became gilded in a most funky way. From old broken doll parts to lunchboxes and teapots her happy plants had happy if not somewhat disco-fied homes. I am so grateful that much of my design aesthetic comes from her. She was quite talented and people adored her! 

This year will mark twelve years since she died and while the sadness and heartache have faded a bit, it's still there as I suppose it will always be. Mother's day for me can be triple-y steeped in sadness but I try to focus on the good which is my mamos and her love of plants and cooking. This year I have a super quick gift idea that I know my mamos would have adored. 

A be-lovely basil bounty!
All you need is a selection of basil either home-sprouted or garden-store purchased, a handful or so of peat rocks, an awl or other sharp pointy tool, block of scrap wood and a pretty tin, I found mine at the thrift last week.
Place your tin on top of your scrap wood and puncture a series of holes using your awl or punch-tool.
This will help the water drain so your roots don't get too wet. using the wood block will both allow for easier puncturing and keep your work-surface puncture free.
Scatter a handful of small peat rocks or other gravel-y bits.

Gently remove your plants from their containers, taking care to gently squeeze at the roots to separate them a wee bit and place into the tin. I used three plants which almost perfectly filled the tin with soil. I still needed to add a handful of potting soil but that was it.
 Arrange as you will and give them a good watering, enough to dampen the soil, not drown them. Ta-da! A bee-yoo-tee-ful bounty of basil perfect for use in the kitchen this summer. That's the best part. It can be used up before it goes to seed as basil is an annual and will not last much longer than one season (which I am glad to know now as I thought I kept killing it). Happy Gardening and Happy Mother's Day to you lucky, lucky ones!


  1. A lovely post! Sending you love xx

  2. thank you annie! love right back to ya!

  3. Your Mamos sounded like a cool lady, Jek. I think she'd love your blog.