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View Full Version : My Basil isn't happy. Help! :(



Ravenix
13 Sep 2011, 10:19
I have a basil plant growing on the kitchen windowsill, and up to now it's been doing fine. I grew it from seed (it was a little 'grow your own basil' thing from Homebase) and moved it to a bigger pot once it was big enough. I've been watering it every so often and it's gotten pretty big (tbh it needs planting out in the garden, but I'm waiting on the wind dropping). BUT! In the past couple of days, big dark blotches have appeared on some leaves, and the baby leaves at the bottom look withered and generally sad. I'm not sure if it's over or under-watered, or just sunburnt :/ I've included some pictures to help with diagnosis.

Amelia-Mary
13 Sep 2011, 12:12
Maybe the air in the room is too dry and it can't get it's nutrients properly, Or it could just be the soil, maybe if you re-potted it in rich organic soil and add plant food or something it might start to perk up :)

Ravenix
13 Sep 2011, 12:14
That sounds like an idea. Like I say, it needs to be moved into the garden at some point anyway, and sooner rather than later as the frosts will be coming in soon :/ Also we have central heating, so the air being too dry is a distinct possibility.

Amelia-Mary
13 Sep 2011, 12:16
Or get one of those window boxes that are kinda like rectangle-ish and you can detach them from the outer window and bring it in in harsh weather. Saying that though, because it's been grown primarily indoors (right?) It may be weaker to the wind because it may not have had 'experience' of strong winds which could cause it to snap

Ravenix
13 Sep 2011, 12:35
Yeah, that's what I was worried about :/ I might just put it in a big pot and grow it in my room over the winter... If I can get it happy again!

Amelia-Mary
13 Sep 2011, 12:41
I hope you can! Best of luck :)

Dez
13 Sep 2011, 16:46
Huh...those don't look like crispy dried leaves to me.

How long have you had it? Basil is a biennial, and most store bought ones are already on the older side to be big.

Tylluan Penry
13 Sep 2011, 23:42
I've never managed to over-winter basil, even indoors. In the UK, especially up north where you are Ravenix, it tends to be treated as an annual. I would personally harvest the healthy leaves and start again next year. But of course, maybe Basil just loses the will to live when I'm around....
Best of luck!

Ravenix
14 Sep 2011, 14:26
Huh...those don't look like crispy dried leaves to me.

How long have you had it? Basil is a biennial, and most store bought ones are already on the older side to be big.

Roughly guessing, I've had it a couple of months, and I grew it from seed.


I've never managed to over-winter basil, even indoors. In the UK, especially up north where you are Ravenix, it tends to be treated as an annual. I would personally harvest the healthy leaves and start again next year. But of course, maybe Basil just loses the will to live when I'm around....
Best of luck!

Oh dear :( So it's just reaching the end of its life? I've kept it indoors its whole life so I thought it wouldn't be too affected by the annual cycles.... then again a few of my herbs outside die off over winter and come back (except the golden feverfew, which completely snuffed it from being forced out of the soil by some incredibly vivacious parsley that needs cutting back every two weeks to stop it overtaking the garden).

Hawkfeathers
14 Sep 2011, 18:19
I found this:

http://www.ehow.com/how-does_5622248_happens-gets-black-spots-leaves_.html

Ravenix
16 Sep 2011, 08:47
I found this:

http://www.ehow.com/how-does_5622248_happens-gets-black-spots-leaves_.html

AHA! I was worried it would be this :( Thanks! I'll get to destroying those leaves right away.

Ravenix
18 Sep 2011, 07:18
UPDATE: After some reading on the 'Net, it appears that the plant is not only overwatered, but it also has a potassium deficiency (the black splodges are too big to be leaf spot). I've ordered some high-potash fertiliser and I'm going to water it less... hopefully it'll pick up (providing it's not an infection of some kind, although the symptoms don't match any of the most common ones). Since I've removed the knackered leaves, the black splodges have never come back as big. Fingers crossed!

Dez
18 Sep 2011, 12:27
Yay! Hope that's it.

Tylluan Penry
19 Sep 2011, 00:20
Great stuff - let us know how you get on. :)