Reasons why basil grows poorly and what to do about it
Basil is a whimsical plant, so many summer residents face problems when growing it. This herb has a number of characteristics that are important to consider at every stage of cultivation. Let's take a look at the possible causes of poor growth in basil.
The content of the article
- Why does basil grow poorly?
- Why basil seedlings do not grow
- How to make basil grow well
- What to do if basil grows poorly
Why does basil grow poorly?
Basil is a spicy herb that has been known since ancient times and is popular all over the world... There are many plant varieties, they differ in the height of the bush, the size and color of the leaves, aroma and properties.
When growing spices, they often face problems as the basil needs proper care. Poor quality seeds are rare, the most common reason for poor crop growth is agronomic mistakes.
Often gardeners grow basil from seeds... A possible reason for the seed not sprouting is poor quality.
Important! Do not use seeds that are out of date.
If within 2 weeks the seeds have not germinated, you can sow new ones: the previous ones were expired or were stored incorrectly.
Unfavorable environmental conditions
When planting a basil it is important to take into account the weather conditions in the region. The plant is not adapted to cold temperatures and lack of sunlight.
Features of the spice:
- Basil is a thermophilic plant. Even a slight temperature fluctuation brings harm to it. Optimum performance for growing it is from + 25 ° C. Low values cause problems with growth. The maximum temperature that basil can withstand is + 40 ° C.
- Lack of sunlight is bad for grass growth. She needs up to 16 hours of light a day.
- Unsuitable soil often causes poor growth. The soil should be light, loose and fertile. On the site, places are suitable where vegetables used to grow.
- Frequent rains and excessive soil moisture are detrimental to the spice.
If the environmental conditions are not suitable for growing spicy bushes, they are created artificially using additional lighting or growing seedlings in greenhouses.
In order for the spice to grow and delight with the harvest, it is important to correctly follow all the planting points.
Mistakes that gardeners often make when growing basil:
- Use of expired seeds. They won't give seedlings, as well as those that were stored incorrectly.
- Planting early in cold soil.
- Improper plant care: untimely or excessive moisture, lack of heat, light and nutrients.
- Sowing too deep. Tender sprouts will not break through the layer of earth. Seeds are covered by 0.5-1 cm.
It is important to avoid stagnant water after irrigation. Excess moisture often leads to the appearance of a black leg.
Diseases and pests
Basil is resistant to various pathogens, but under unfavorable conditions it is affected by infections or insects.
The most common fungal diseases that affect the spice:
- Blackleg... It develops in conditions of high acidity, poor air exchange in the soil and its excessive moisture. The root collar of seedlings is susceptible to the disease. The vessels that feed the plant are clogged. The stem becomes soft and thin, darkens, the leaves turn yellow, and the plant dies.
- Fusarium. Mushrooms release toxins into the nutritive juices of the plant, affecting its vessels. The stems become thin and brown in color. In adult plants, the top gradually dries up, first they wither, then die.
- Gray rot... Most often it affects plants in greenhouses and hotbeds. First it appears on the lower leaves, then it affects the entire bush. The affected areas are covered with gray-brown dry spots, which become watery, and a gray fluff is formed.
Of the pests, the most dangerous for basil are the field bug and aphids.
Aphids suck juice from stems and leaves. The stems stop developing, the leaves curl up, the plant dries up. Insects leave a sugary secretion that becomes a beneficial environment for the development of a sooty fungus that covers the plant with a dark coating.
Reference. Aphids carry viral diseases that cannot be cured.
The field bug feeds on basil juice. As a result of the lesion, the leaves of the plant are deformed, covered with light spots, acquire a brown tint and die off. Both adults and larvae cause harm.
Other plants can help reduce the likelihood of pests. Basil goes well with cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, onions, zucchini, corn, beans, fennel, lettuce and lettuce. It is not recommended to plant spices next to dill and marjoram.
Why basil seedlings do not grow
Basil seedlings grow slowly at first. It is worth being wary if growth is not noticed at all.
Slow growth is often associated with:
- the plant lacks heat and light;
- cold soil;
- insufficient or excessive watering;
- the soil is heavy and acidic;
- lack of nutrients.
If you eliminate these causes, basil will delight you with lush greenery.
How to make basil grow well
There are few reasons for poor plant growth. It is important to correctly identify and eliminate them before the crop is killed. When problems begin, it is easier to fix them by saving the crop. If there are no apparent reasons for poor growth, the plant needs feeding.
Eliminating the causes of poor growth
To fix the situation with poor spice growth, it is important to eliminate its causes:
- The lack of heat and sunlight is compensated for by phytolamps, extending the daylight hours to 12-16 hours. For seedlings, it is important to additionally create comfortable conditions if there are not enough of them outside.
- Only light neutral soil is suitable for spices. It is important to insulate the land on the site, especially in the first time after planting the shoots. For this, the plants are covered with plastic wrap.
- Basil needs timely watering. Do not allow the soil to dry out and fill the roots. The plants are moistened only with settled warm water.
The spice is fertilized several times during growth. The first top dressing is applied 10 days after planting in open ground. For this, a solution of bird droppings is used. For the second time, the culture is fertilized after 2 weeks, for example, with a solution of nitrophoska.
Attention! To get rid of pests, the bushes are treated with soapy water or insecticides, if the lesions are significant.
Fungal diseases do not respond well to treatment. The black leg cannot be cured, therefore, the bushes affected by it are immediately removed, and the soil is spilled with a saturated solution of potassium permanganate. As a preventive measure, they lime the soil, observe the irrigation regime, and air the plantings in the greenhouse and greenhouse.
At the first signs of fusarium, chemicals are not used immediately. To begin with, a solution of onion husks is sprayed onto the plants (4 parts of the husk per 1 part of water, leave for a day). The same remedy will help with gray rot, but only at the initial stage. In advanced cases, fungicides are used.
As a top dressing use:
- Organic fertilizers: vermicompost, vermigumate, seedling vermigrant or universal. They are bought in special stores. The products nourish the plants well, are harmless for their further use in food.
- Manure or compost. As a top dressing, gardeners recommend adding urea to water for watering basil.
- Ash that repels pests.
- Mineral fertilizers. Pokon strengthens leaves, promotes root development and rapid growth; YORKEY increases stem conductivity and accelerates growth; Soyuzkhim protects from external harmful influences and promotes rapid development.
It is believed that the plant absorbs chemicals that are contained in mineral fertilizers. The result is a not entirely environmentally friendly product.
What to do if basil grows poorly
Although the spice is most often grown in Asian countries and the Caucasus, it can also be grown in central Russia.
In the greenhouse
Greenhouse growing has several advantages:
- the yield of the crop is better than in the open field;
- no dependence on weather conditions and the environment;
- the harvest is obtained all year round.
In the greenhouse for the basil, it is important to create the right conditions:
- The greenhouse should be ventilated and constructed of materials that retain heat well and allow light to pass through. Seedlings in a shelter must withstand even the most severe frosts.
- When planting in spring, the top layer of soil is mixed with manure, since it retains heat.
- The greenhouse should be located in a place that is well lit by the sun.
- A sandy soil rich in nutrients is suitable for the plant. Before planting, the soil is prepared: the top layer is removed, dug up with peat and sand.
- When planting, it is important to maintain a distance between the bushes of 25-30 cm, between rows - 20-30 cm.
- The soil needs loosening and timely watering. It is important to remove weeds.
For cultivation in winter, the greenhouse is heated. It is expensive, which is why basil is often grown at home in cold weather.
In the open field
In open ground, the plant is planted taking into account the environmental conditions. If the region has less sun and more rainfall, it is better to think about greenhouse cultivation.
Features of open field cultivation:
- The landing site should be illuminated by the sun. It is not recommended to plant basil in the shade of trees as it requires a lot of heat and light.
- The soil must be nutritious. For this, places where potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes, and legumes grew are suitable.
- To maintain the optimum temperature, the seedlings are covered with foil and left for 2 weeks after the plants are transferred to the site. It is important to monitor the air temperature during the day: if it is above + 20 ° C, the shelter is removed for a day.
- The garden bed is prepared in the fall. The earth is dug up, weeds are removed, organic matter, potash fertilizers and superphosphate granules are applied.
- It is better to water the plants in the evening, avoiding excessive moisture and drying out of the soil.
The soil is covered with sawdust or mown grass - then it will be difficult for weeds to grow, and the earth will remain loose for a long time.
When grown at home, it is important to provide the spices with good lighting, warmth (at least + 25 ° C) and light, breathable soil.
The room should be free of drafts and sudden temperature changes. Do not allow stagnation of water in the pot and shade seedlings.
Important! If possible, grow basil on windowsills that are on the south or southeast side. A loggia is suitable for growing seedlings. When ventilating the room, remove the plants to another place or cover with plastic.
Growing tank requirements:
- spacious pots or containers with holes at the bottom with a depth of 10 cm;
- drainage layer - 2-3 cm (expanded clay, pebbles, broken brick, crushed stone).
The soil is bought in the store or made by yourself. Mix options:
- garden soil + humus + peat soil (equal proportions);
- 1 part coconut substrate + 2 parts soil + 2 parts humus;
- 2 parts of land + 1 part of humus.
Self-made soil is disinfected with 1% potassium permanganate solution or "Fitosporin". Other methods of disinfection are freezing for 1 week or roasting in the oven at + 180 ° C for 2 hours.
In order for the basil to thicken, it is necessary to pinch 2 top leaves (starting with 6 permanent ones). The same is done when the plant is about to bloom. If you do not remove the upper leaves and flowers, the bush will quickly wither.
Basil will delight you with freshness and aroma, if you follow the agricultural techniques of its cultivation. Sunlight, warmth and timely watering are important for the spice. The place in a summer cottage or in an apartment should be well lit. The absence of drafts is desirable. To accelerate growth, the plant is fed.