Something is eating my basil! And it's not me.

A forum for problem solving and exchanging ideas and knowledge related to the edible garden. Now includes sub-forum for sharing recipes and other ideas for using produce.

Moderators: Forum_mod, Pam, jack, Sam, Luzy

Something is eating my basil! And it's not me.

Postby Welly » Sat Jan 12, 2013 9:38 am

Hi all!

I've recently joined this forum as I've recently discovered my green fingers (or is it thumbs?). I've got a little balcony garden going on with a (non-fruiting) tomato plant (questions about that later), chilli plant (the success story of my balcony), a bunch of herbs - basil, rosemary, vietnamese mint, oregano, lemon thyme and a mostly dead parsley plant.

The leaves on the chilli, tomato and basil plants are being eaten by something. I've read that it could be caterpillars but firstly, how would they get up to my balcony when I'm a little way up in an apartment block, unless like the Sydney flying cockroach, we have Sydney flying caterpillars too? Secondly, I've never seen a caterpillar and I've inspected the leaves thoroughly.

They're not in a disastrous state but I'm still concerned. What could it possibly be? And how might I stop it from happening?

Thanks very much in advance!

Welly
Welly
Apprentice
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:59 pm
Location: Sydney

Re: Something is eating my basil! And it's not me.

Postby greg.l » Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:51 am

All caterpillars fly,after they become butterflies. The butterflies fly up and lay eggs on your vegies, they hatch into caterpillars, during the day they hide in the soil and come out at night to feast. Cockroaches, though they are horrible, won't hurt your plants at all. It is the beautiful butterflies that cause the problems.
greg.l
Gardening Sage
 
Posts: 1032
Joined: Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:48 pm
Location: Bathurst

Re: Something is eating my basil! And it's not me.

Postby Welly » Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:10 pm

Of course! I didn't think about that! Is there anything I can do (I guess there probably is) to stop the caterpillars feasting?
Welly
Apprentice
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:59 pm
Location: Sydney

Re: Something is eating my basil! And it's not me.

Postby karyn » Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:22 pm

Bird netting. You can buy any size you want at hardware stores, it's not very attractive but keeps the butterflies/moths away. The white stuff is usually better quality, but the black stuff is less visible. You could also ask at your supermarket/fruit and veg for a couple of old onion string bags, they'll cover up a good sized pot quite nicely. The pic shows how I cover my Broccoli, it looks ugly but I get all the broccoli. Without the netting, I'd get none.
008.JPG
User avatar
karyn
Gardening Sage
 
Posts: 1828
Joined: Tue May 08, 2007 12:48 pm
Location: Adelaide Hills

Re: Something is eating my basil! And it's not me.

Postby Coustralee » Mon Jan 14, 2013 12:33 am

Ive found nothing really is a problem with my basil, some insects will have a munch on it, but they soon quit. It may even repel insects, you might be able to find a companion plant that will repel whatever is going for it.
Coustralee
Head Gardener
 
Posts: 103
Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2008 1:10 am


Return to Fruit and Produce

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron