In this tutorial, I will show you how to harvest basil seeds from plants and how to save seeds to be ready for seeding in the next seeding season.
Step by step guide
Step 1 – Cut basil flowers, the top bits of the basil plant, (as in the above photo), place it on the piece of paper, and leave it in a cool and dry place for a couple of weeks to dry. You will know that your cuttings are dry enough for seed harvesting once you see that some seeds started to drop off on the piece of paper.
Step 2 – Once the cuttings are dry, take each cutting over the white piece of paper and between your two fingers and squeeze out seeds from the buds. The white paper is handy to use as you will easily see seeds dropping down on it.
The seeds that will come out of each bud will look oval, like a small brownish/blackish eggs. They are about 2 millimeters long and 1 millimeter wide (as in the above photo) and pretty hard. They smell of the basil.
Step 3 – Keep squeezing each bud. You will get about 5 to 6 pieces of seeds from each bud. To collect as much as possible seeds, make sure you squeeze all of them out.
Step 4 – Collect all seeds from the paper and place them in the container. Put the container in the dry, dark, and preferably drafty place, out of direct sunshine to dry and get ready for seeding in the next seeding season.
So, to harvest the seeds from basil you would need one piece of white paper to make sure you see each seed that comes out of the basil buds and small container where you will collect all seeds.
What to do with empty buds? Save the empty buds and use it in cooking as you would use basil leaves.