The premiere culinary herb
Loaded with volatile oils, basil is responsible for the heady aroma and strong flavors essential to so many recipes. With a wide range of flavors and colors, basil is used in everything from making Italian pesto to flavoring vegetables and fish. Basil plants, particularly the purple-leaved varieties, are also attractive in the flower garden, and many can be used as cut flowers. Basil can also be used as a companion plant to repel aphids, mites, and tomato hornworms.