Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Lemon Basil
Ocimum basilicum 'Mrs. Burns'

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ocimum (OSS-ih-mum) (Info)
Species: basilicum (bass-IL-ee-kum) (Info)
Cultivar: Mrs. Burns

One vendor has this plant for sale.

19 members have or want this plant for trade.


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

Not Applicable

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From herbaceous stem cuttings
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

Click thumbnail
to view:

By LilyLover_UT
Thumbnail #1 of Ocimum basilicum by LilyLover_UT


2 positives
3 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive kmom246 On Dec 2, 2007, kmom246 from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

I prefer Mrs. Burns to Sweet Dani for both fragrance and taste; however, it is slightly more difficult to germinate and does not seem to be as vigorous a grower here in the high desert. I have grown it only in "full desert sun", however, and it may benefit from afternoon shade (as so many "full sun" plants do here in the desert). I like it so much, though, that while I will continue to grow Sweet Dani for "every day use," I will grow Mrs. Burns for tea and aromatherapy. The leaves are smaller and more delicate than Sweet Dani, and the plants more compact and bushy.

Neutral berrygirl On Mar 4, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:

New Mexico heirloom.

Neutral dmj1218 On May 3, 2006, dmj1218 from west Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

Lemon basil taste with sweet, tangy flavor. Very bright green, 2-21/2" long leaves with white blooms. Heirloom.

Positive bmuller On May 3, 2002, bmuller from Albuquerque, NM (Zone 7a) wrote:

By far the best variety of lemon basil I've found is one called "Mrs. Burns'". Wonderful fragrance, even when drooping and dying, left in the garden in the winter. Tasty and soothing as a component of an herb tea mixture as well as flavorful for cooking.

Neutral mystic On Aug 11, 2001, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

Small-leaves and a wonderful citrus fragrance.Delicious in tea, vinegar, jelly, and with seafood. To harvest, remove growth whenever four sets of true leaves can be left on the plant. This encourages bushier growth and increased yield. For best foliage flavor, cut before flowering. Leaf flavor changes after flowers open. After cutting, wash and pat leaves dry. Use immediately or store in perforated plastic bags in the refrigerator. When drying the leaves, harvest early in the day but after dew has dried.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Clearwater, Florida
Lutz, Florida
Welaka, Florida
Athens, Georgia
Marrero, Louisiana
Silver Springs, Nevada
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Coos Bay, Oregon
Fort Worth, Texas
Humble, Texas

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