The Thai basil (Ocimum basilicum var. thyrsiflora) belongs to Lamiaceae (the Mint family). It is an annual herb that is a species of "basil" native to Southeast Asia. It grows to a height of about 45 cm. The stem is purple and its cross section is square. The leaves are glossy green, oblong-ovate, slightly serrate, and arranged in crossed pairs. The leaves have a fragrance similar to licorice or anise and a slightly pungent taste, and are widely used in Southeast Asia. The inflorescence is purple and the flowers are pink when open.