Getting Started

August's Limited Release Seedlings

Lettuce Grow | AUGUST 2, 2021
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Starting in August, we will be launching limited release seedlings each month! These releases will feature seasonally driven, food-forward varieties that are sure to stand out on your Farmstand and make an impression in the kitchen. They will only be available while supplies last so don’t wait to place your order.

August’s featured seedlings are Lemon Basil and Lemon Balm! They are the perfect pair to keep you relaxed and refreshed as we make our way through the dead of summer.  Get to know our inaugural limited release varieties below.

Lemon Basil

Ready for its first harvest in 3 - 6 weeks, Lemon Basil is a hybrid of sweet basil and African basil, and is related to mint. It is cultivated mostly in Southern Asia and Northern Africa and is used extensively in Arabic, Indonesian, Philippines, Lao, Malay, Persian, and Thai cuisine.

Flavor

The flavor of Lemon Basil is sweet and tangy with lemon and limes notes, and hints of anise. This basil variety is mild so adding it to dishes will not overpower softer flavors.

Lemon basil is best used as a finishing ingredient. It will lose flavor over time and as it cooks, it should be added right before serving a dish in order to maintain its aroma and flavor. 

Plant Care

Just like classic Genovese basil, you can start light harvests once the plant has become established. You can encourage bushier growth by harvesting the tops of basil stems as this will promote side shoots.

This variety will produce flowers that have a refreshing lemon scent. These should be removed immediately to encourage vegetative growth and preserve the flavor and texture of the plant. Lemon basil leaves bruise easily, so handle carefully.

Health Benefits

Anti-Inflammatory: Lemon Basil is high in citral and limonene which has well-known anti-inflammatory benefits.

Good Vision: This plant is rich in beta carotene which the body converts into Vitamin A, which is essential for good vision as well as healthy mucus membranes.

Healthy Bones: It is an excellent source of Vitamin K which powers the development of healthy bones and helps with blood clotting.

Lemon Balm

This variety will be fully established and ready to harvest in about 8 - 14 weeks. Time to First Harvest: 8 - 14 weeks. It is a great herb to have around your Farmstand as it attracts bees.

The first part of Lemon Balm’s latin name,

​​Melissa officinalis,

actually refers to the Greek word for “honey bee” since they love it so much.  It is also commonly used in herbal teas and medicine, which is the second part of its Latin name,

officinalis

, meaning “of the workshop” alluding to the medieval apothecary shop.

Flavor

Lemon Balm is actually a member of the mint family. It has the bright, citrusy flavor of lemon but sneaks in subtle hints of mint. Even with these flavors, Lemon Balm still maintains a slightly sweet flavor.

This plant is extremely versatile so feel free to get creative! It is great to use in desserts and teas or as a garnish in salads and seafood. Stems are edible and packed with flavor so don’t leave them out!

Plant Care

Lemon Balm has a vigorous spreading habit so you should continually harvest and prune the plant. This will keep its growth manageable and encourage thicker growth. Additionally, this will help rejuvenate your plant if it is looking poor due to weather, pests, or other stresses. No more than a third of the plant should be harvested at a time.

Health Benefits

Studies have shown that Lemon Balm can help:

● Relieve stress and reduce anxiety
● Boost cognitive function
● Relieve indigestion
● Minimize menstrual cramps and ease headache pain
● Ease insomnia and other sleep disorders