I saw something at the plant store this spring that I couldn’t resist: Spicy Basil Globe. The herb called to me like gold coins call to Barbosa in Pirates of the Caribbean. Intrigued, I held the tiny plant up to my face and inhaled and sure enough, it smelled spicy. I had to grow it to tell you a bout it!
Growing Spicy Basil Globe
Spicy Basil Globe is an annual that grows in a compact ball. I’m not sure how that even works because Lord knows I haven’t pruned it but sure enough, mine is growing accordingly in an adorable little globe shape. The leaves are teeny tiny compared to “regular” basil and the plant itself is quite compact, making it a great choice for containers or to tuck in tight spaces. It only gets about 12″ tall, considerably shorter than most basil plants. The leaves are so tiny in fact that you don’t even really need to cut or tear them for recipes!
I have my Spicy Basil Globe plant in my raised bed garden, which gets full sun and has excellent well-drained soil. Like everything in my raised bed garden, I feed it every 4 weeks with seaweed extract but that’s it. So far I’ve had zero issue with Spicy Basil Globe, much like genovese basil. Honestly basil is one of my favorite things to grow. It’s just so easy to grow!
Amazingly enough, Spicy Basil Globe really does have a spicy flavor, almost peppery but not so intense as arugula. It’s still got the sweetness of basil. It’s a fun, different flavor profile that’s a fabulous addition to any kitchen garden.
Basil Growing Tips
The biggest mistakes I see people making with basil is that they don’t harvest correctly and they don’t pluck the flowers. You do not want basil to flower. It’ll make the leaves bitter. Just pinch the tops off when you see them start to bolt and flower, preferably before they flower like you see here:
When you harvest, don’t just pluck a few leaves. Snap a stem off above a leaf set. This applies to classic basil plants as well. Ever grow basil only to have a few super tall stems wishing you had a bushier plant? DO THIS! When you harvest like this, more plant will grow from the leaf set, which will give you a much bigger, bushier basil plant with tons more leaves.
I have been using mine in Spicy Basil Caprese Salad to start so I could really get a sense of the flavor and I love it. It would also make the most intriguing pesto! I can’t wait to try that. The flavor profile would be great in any Spanish dish.
If you love basil, I highly recommend growing this fun herb! Love it? Pin it!