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Basil ?

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Basil ?

Post  Miss Erica on 5/15/2012, 7:19 pm

I got two basil seedlings from the store here at the end of March. (Two different stores but according to my friend - they have the same supplier... this is a pretty small island after all...) they are NOT in Mel's Mix... I bought them when I first moved her - before I had even heard of SFG. They are in the Miracle Gro "Moisture Control" potting soil. After a week or so - I noticed they weren't doing very well at all. Leaves dropping, stem turning black, and growing crooked... My Google searches lead me to think Fusilium wilt. I decided to wait it out and see what happened. (While keeping them separated from other plants by several feet...) In the last week or so - they have appeared to start perking up again and putting out new growth.
(click pic to enlarge)

I was thinking about perhaps whacking off the lower half that is clearly diseased/sick and repotting the healthy parts... Is basil the kind of plant that will root from cuttings? Do I need to go get the rooting hormone stuff? From what I read - if it was FW - the soil will be contaminated - so I would repot in Mel's Mix... (I have some left over from when I made my garden box...)

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Re: Basil ?

Post  michellentn on 5/15/2012, 8:35 pm

i googled the info about basil cuttings and it sounds easy and can be propagated either in soil or water. It says not to pinch or cut with scissors but to use a sharp knife. a couple of websites said that.

here is one link:

http://ezinearticles.com/?Herb-Gardening---Growing-Basil-Cuttings&id=4120651

I started some plants through seeds and they all sprouted. I used the Burpee seeds from home depot. much cheaper than online. i also plan to propagate more thru cuttings later.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  walshevak on 5/15/2012, 10:10 pm

I would not take any cutting from what may be an infected plant.

Fusarium wilt is caused by a fungus that can be carried by either the soil that affected basil plants have been growing in or by seeds from infected basil plants.

There is no remedy for fusarium wilt. Destroy infected plants and do not plant basil or other mint plants in that area for 2-3 years. Even if a basil or mint plant cannot be hurt by fusarium wilt, they can carry the disease and infect other plants.

However, the plant on the right just looks hungry to me. I would continue to isolate the two plants and feed both of them after cutting off and burning the lower leaves of the left one. Check back in a few weeks.

Did you know FW is also a big problem with bananas? Does Guam have bananas?

http://www.agribusinessweek.com/fusarium-wilt-a-renewed-threat-in-banana-production/

Kay

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Re: Basil ?

Post  Miss Erica on 5/15/2012, 10:21 pm

oh yes - lots and lots of banana trees - they grow wild along the side of the road as a matter of fact. I have one in my backyard.

I have "Vigoro Brand - Tomato & Vegetable Plant Food (12-10-5)" that I bought before I jumped on the SFG bandwagon - feed them with that?

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Re: Basil ?

Post  Ha-v-v on 5/15/2012, 10:24 pm

I would say it is too moist, Basils like well drained soil, it might be holding too much. At least thats what it looks like to me from the many varieties we have grown that are bushes when the season is over. In fact mine are struggling now with the huge rains we have had.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  walshevak on 5/15/2012, 10:35 pm

Good catch Ha-v-v. I forgot they are not planted in MM and might be retaining water. Erica is Guam having a wetter than normal dry period? I know the Philippines are. I hate to put much food in though, as herbs usually like it a little on the dryer, lean and hungry side. So only go with half of what the package recommends.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  GWN on 5/15/2012, 11:01 pm

Basil likes nitrogen and not too much water, DRY roots.
I feed my basil either guano, or watered down pee.
Both high in nitrogen.

but they wilt when they are too wet. I would wonder if you just let them dry out.
Basil basically becomes a woody plant, and so cutting it back, it might survive and go on to produce.
always leave at least 4 leaves on the plant

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Re: Basil ?

Post  Miss Erica on 5/15/2012, 11:31 pm

they are planted in the Miracle Gro "Moisture Control" mix that supposedly serves the same purpose as the MM in that it retains "just enough" water... whatever that means.

As far as the weather? Dunno. I've been watering them every 2-3 days but it hasn't been raining MUCH here. There have been a few mornings where we have either had overnight rain or very heavy dew but not much in the way of downpours/etc....

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Re: Basil ?

Post  walshevak on 5/16/2012, 10:43 am

So too wet and hungry seems to be the advice. Let us know how they turn out. And remember, in the tropics they will not die back. And if they go to seed you will have basil plants everywhere. I am still picking out basil seedlings from one of my beds.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  quiltbea on 5/16/2012, 12:18 pm

I, too, was thinking 'too wet.' Most herbs need lots less water than veggie crops and their soil doesn't need richness. They do well in poorer soil. That 'moisture control' stuff isn't something I'd use with any herbs.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  Miss Erica on 5/16/2012, 6:23 pm

I really appreciate your help... I will give this a try and let you know how it goes!

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Re: Basil ?

Post  floyd1440 on 5/16/2012, 8:12 pm

@GWN wrote:Basil likes nitrogen and not too much water, DRY roots.
I feed my basil either guano, or watered down pee.
Both high in nitrogen.

but they wilt when they are too wet. I would wonder if you just let them dry out.
Basil basically becomes a woody plant, and so cutting it back, it might survive and go on to produce.
always leave at least 4 leaves on the plant

Would coffee grounds be a good nitrogen source?


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Re: Basil ?

Post  GWN on 5/16/2012, 8:22 pm



Would coffee grounds be a good nitrogen source?
I do not know too much about coffee grounds.
I have always found that if I did not add a high nitrogen substance to my basil, it turns pale
I should add that I harvest it all year long and something that grows that much green needs some nitrogen.
So I use guano, but I am sure any other high nitrogen source would work fine

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Re: Basil ?

Post  Miss Erica on 5/16/2012, 8:29 pm

I've been putting my coffee grounds in my compost pile.... but I can easily divert some of them to the basil if y'all think it will help... scratch up the surface a few inches and put them around the plant? Or do I need to repot them completely?

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Re: Basil ?

Post  GWN on 5/16/2012, 8:32 pm

Someone recently had an article here about coffee grounds, I read most of it, but not the whole thing.
The article said that the coffee grounds were good for tomatoes, and I have found that it is NOT good to put nitrogen on tomatoes because they will only produce leaves and no fruit.
So the only things I add nitrogen stuff to is basil, spinach and Kale.

So I would guess that coffee grounds is not a high source of nitrogen

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Re: Basil ?

Post  GWN on 5/16/2012, 8:43 pm

The other thing is.... perhaps they need to be repotted.
I finally was able to enlarge your picture and they do not look that bad.
They are VERY established plants, mine do not get woody like that until much later in the year.
I have grown it such that if you prune it right you can continue to grow it for almost a year.
I am hoping to take all of mine inside in the fall.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  Miss Erica on 5/17/2012, 6:44 am

@GWN wrote:
They are VERY established plants, mine do not get woody like that until much later in the year.
Is that a good thing or a bad thing? I brought them home from Home Depot about a month ago... I took them out of the standard 4" plastic pot they came in and put them in a bigger pot. I can't imagine they are more than a couple months old.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  dianamarie03 on 5/17/2012, 11:28 am

I would try changing the soil. I transplanted all my seedlings into the Miracle Gro and they almost all died. The soil had blight spores and fungus gnats, I'll never buy Miracle Gro or Scotts again.

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Re: Basil ?

Post  floyd1440 on 5/17/2012, 8:20 pm

@GWN wrote:Someone recently had an article here about coffee grounds, I read most of it, but not the whole thing.
The article said that the coffee grounds were good for tomatoes, and I have found that it is NOT good to put nitrogen on tomatoes because they will only produce leaves and no fruit.
So the only things I add nitrogen stuff to is basil, spinach and Kale.

So I would guess that coffee grounds is not a high source of nitrogen

I purchased a compost book and oddly coffee grounds are considered a "green" item that has a lot of nitrogen content and the browns are the carbon source.

Saw that article on coffee grounds and if I find it I will post it......

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Re: Basil ?

Post  camprn on 5/17/2012, 8:27 pm

Is this the one you are looking for?
http://www.seattlepi.com/lifestyle/homegarden/article/Give-your-garden-a-jolt-with-coffee-grounds-1126438.php

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Re: Basil ?

Post  floyd1440 on 5/17/2012, 8:29 pm

Saved me again Camp.........

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Re: Basil ?

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