How to Propagate Basil

6 Materials
2 Weeks

Love basil? Did you know that you can take a cutting and it will grow roots easily in water? This is a great hack that works on any basil plant - even the inexpensive plants from the grocery store! Often, those grocery store plants have too many plants squeezed into too small of a pot, so taking cuttings is a great way to turn that one crowded plant into multiple plants with more space to grow!

Here is how to do it.

Read more of our propagation tips and get our FREE Plant Propagation eBook on my blog!

Take a cutting

Cut pieces off of your mama basil plant. You want about 6 inches of stem. Use sharp clean scissors. I suggest taking several cuttings at once, while you are doing it might as well do a bunch!

Prep cutting

Remove any lower leaves that will fall in the water.

Place in water

Place your cutting in water and set in indirect sunlight.

Grow roots!

After about 2 weeks, your roots should be about 2 inches long. If not, leave in water until they are about 2 inches long.

Plant in soil

Plant your cutting in a pot in soil. Water thoroughly and keep watered, especially if it starts to look droopy. Place in a sunny window for best results!

Basil makes a great gift! Teach a friend to propagate it and it's the gift that keeps giving.

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Morgan McBride

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

1 question
  • PamPam
    on Jun 25, 2020

    I have tried this but all I ever get is dead leaves and smelly water. Any thought on what I may be doing incorrectly?

Join the conversation

2 of 5 comments
  • Lynne
    on Jun 24, 2020

    i sure needed this info, and thanks

  • Cindy @ Upcycle Design Lab
    on Jun 25, 2020

    I am going to try this today. Thanks so much for the tip. I love basil and always have a plant in the summer but now maybe I can have it all year. 🙂

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