Helping You Become a More Successful Gardener
James H. Schutte
OCIMUM x citriodorum 'Pesto Perpetuo' PP16260
Lemon Basil, Pesto Perpetuo Lemon Basil, Variegated Lemon Basil
Lovely, fragrant, variegated foliage covers this surprisingly vigorous warm season herb all summer. Introduced by Sunny Border Nurseries in 2004, 'Pesto Perpetuo' has an almost columnar bushy habit. Its pale green leaves are edged in ivory and have a crisp, clean look. It was discovered by Pierre Bennerup of Berlin, Connecticut in a block of Ocimum x citriodorum ‘Lesbos' plants.
Lemon basil is a natural hybrid, which is a cross between sweet basil (Ocimum basilicum) and hoary basil (Ocimum canum). The foliage of this warm season annual herb, or tender evergreen perennial, has a strong lemony basil fragrance and flavor. It is great for flavoring poultry, salad dressings and fish.
The moderately-sized plants have slightly hairy stems and smooth, oval leaves that are green to gray-green with cream edges. Spikes of white, two-lipped flowers appear as summer temperatures heat up. These are attractive to bees and butterflies. After flowering, plants put fewer resources towards foliage production and more towards flowers and seeds. This results in smaller, stronger, more acrid tasting leaves. So, it is best to pick off buds as they appear to keep plants from blooming.
Satisfyingly easy to grow, basil requires full sun and fertile to average, well-drained soil. Grow it as a spring and summer annual in cooler zones and a year-round perennial in warmer locations. Water regularly for good growth and harvest the leaves often to encourage the continued growth of tender shoots and leaves. Lemon basil is a fragrant choice for kitchen gardens, containers and flower borders. It is also the perfect companion plant for tomatoes, so plant a few at the base of their cages or trellises.
12 - 1
9 - 11
A1, A2, A3, H1, H2, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Full Sun, Partial Sun
12"-18" / 30.5cm - 45.7cm
10"-15" / 25.4cm - 38.1cm
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Container, Edible, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border
Preferred Commerce. All Rights Reserved.