General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 10a -1.1 °C (30 °F) to +1.7 °C (35 °F)
Plant Height: 2-3 feet
Plant Spread: 2-3 feet
Leaves: Unusual foliage color
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Lavender
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Late spring or early summer
Late summer or early fall
Uses: Culinary Herb
Edible Parts: Leaves
Eating Methods: Culinary Herb/Spice
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Deer Resistant
Rabbit Resistant
Propagation: Seeds: Will not come true from seed
Other info: This cultivar is sterile and does not form seeds
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Cuttings: Tip
Containers: Suitable in 3 gallon or larger
Parentage: Ocimum kilimandscharicum x Dark Opal

Common names
  • African Blue Basil
  • Basil
Also sold as:
  • Ocimum kilimandscharicum X basilicum purpureum

This plant is tagged in:
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  • Posted by Ispahan (Chicago - Zone 6a) on Jul 4, 2012 5:32 PM concerning plant:
    A very attractive and sterile ornamental basil that produces a profusion of lovely, purple tinged leaves and continuous large spires of blooms all season long. The flowers are beloved of pollinating insects of all kinds. It is such a joy to see so many native bees working this plant!
  • Posted by Catmint20906 (PNW WA half hour south of Olympia - Zone 8a) on Aug 24, 2014 4:53 PM concerning plant:
    'African Blue' is my favorite ornamental basil. I have grown it two seasons in a row now, and I intend to grow it next year as well. It grows in full sun to a good 3 feet high, bearing tall stalks of pink flowers against purple-veined leaves. 'African Blue' is a cross between Ocimum kilimandscharicum and Ocimum basilicum 'Dark Opal'. The pollinators love it. Its high camphor content (inherited from its East African parent, Ocimum kilimandscharicum, or camphor basil) makes it a less desirable culinary herb, but it is beautiful as an ornamental pollinator magnet.
  • Posted by carlysuko (Oceanside, California. Sunset zone 24 - Zone 10a) on Oct 4, 2018 9:39 PM concerning plant:
    This plant has performed exceptionally well for me. Which is no easy feat for any plant in my garden this year. I had mass casualties from squirrels, gophers, and spider mites. Yet my African Blue Basil looks perfect. It is a blooming machine and always looks healthy. The bees are very fond of it, which is great. I highly recommended this plant!
  • Posted by RebeccaFriedel on May 21, 2017 8:21 PM concerning plant:
    This is my favorite basil. Its flavor is a bit more mellow than sweet basil. I find it blends well with sweet basil when I make pesto, it provides a bit more depth. It's also a beautiful plant.
Plant Events from our members
Catmint20906 On May 17, 2015 Bloomed
Catmint20906 On May 2, 2015 Obtained plant
carlysuko On April 30, 2018 Obtained plant
From La Costa Anderson's Nursery
variegatagal On April 28, 2022 Transplanted
variegatagal On April 6, 2022 Obtained plant
Four Seasons Nursery (x2)
variegatagal On April 16, 2021 Deadheaded
Cutting stuck in pot
variegatagal On April 4, 2021 Potted up
variegatagal On March 24, 2021 Obtained plant
Colonial Creek Farm x2
Mielikki On March 28, 2022 Transplanted
Mielikki On December 12, 2021 Obtained plant
paleohunter On April 11, 2022 Obtained plant
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