Basil leaves constricting #405020 - Ask Extension


Basil leaves constricting #405020

Asked June 06, 2017, 10:23 AM EDT

Some of my basil plants have their leaves starting to curl *upwards* a little bit. Otherwise, they seem to be healthy, but I wasn't sure if this is an indication that they're under stress or if it's just normal. I've attached a picture.

Anne Arundel County Maryland

Expert Response

Your photo was not attached.  Plese resubmit and send photos of the whole plant and affected foliage so we can see what you may be dealing with.

Hope the picture uploaded this time
The Question Asker Replied June 06, 2017, 12:13 PM EDT
Do you know what type of basil it is? In some varieties (like the common 'Genovese' type) a bit of leaf cupping is normal. Do you see any other symptoms (e.g., spots, yellowing)? If the newest foliage looks healthy, it shouldn't be too much of a concern. Make sure they get full sun and water them regularly so they don't get stressed. There are some disease problems with basil (downy mildew and botrytis, for example), but we don't see symptoms of those in your plants.

Thanks for the information. They are listed as "sweet basil", so I suppose they might be of the Genovese type. Other than cupping on just a couple of the plants, they look really healthy. (I had downy mildew on my basil last year, but got rid of all of those plants as well as the seeds I used, buying all new seeds this year. I got a little nervous when I saw the cupping after my entire crop was destroyed last year.) Thanks again! You all rock, BTW.
The Question Asker Replied June 07, 2017, 1:02 PM EDT
You're welcome. Yes, the sweet basil is usually the 'Genovese' type, the "classic" Italian basil. Unfortunately, that type is very susceptible to downy mildew, but we don't usually see the symptoms show up until later in the season. If you are interested, the 'Eleonora' variety of basil has good downy mildew resistance. It is not immune to the disease, but it holds up better than the sweet basil and it has a similar taste.


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