The Centurion
New Week, New Month

Sometimes It's Grimm In the Garden, Too

I always laugh when someone mentions my having a "green thumb" in the comments. Because . . . I don't. I really don't. I have had so many garden mishaps in my years of gardening. So. Many. Plants that fail to thrive. Bad decisions. Planting entire beds that are not suited to the conditions. Pests and diseases . . . spider mites, aphids, thrip, scale, rabbits, deer . . . you name it, I've dealt with it. Overzealous ground cover. Blossom end rot. Let's just say . . . I kill a lot of plants. (One of my garden "zones" is called The Semi-Circle of Death - or SCOD -  for a reason!!!)

But I think that's just part of gardening.

Failure, that is. (Like any "art" or "craft.")
You simply have to accept that not everything is going to work out.
There are no "green thumbs."

Just a willingness to . . . be curious, ask questions, try again.
Or let it go.


For me, this year . . . I'm having troubles in my herb garden.

With . . . basil, of all things!
(And parsley, too.)

I grow a couple of "patches" of basil in my herb garden every year. With great success. As in . . . by now, I'd usually have a couple of basil harvests under my belt, not only enjoying fresh basil in my cooking on the regular and but also making batches of "basil bombs" to store in my freezer for winter. This year? I got this . . . 


Talk about . . . failing to thrive!


That . . . was the sad state of my basil (and parsley) this summer.

And my favorite, trusted nursery . . . was out of basil when I went to buy more! Like . . . they couldn't stock it or grow it fast enough this year. Is even basil a victim of the pandemic supply and demand issue? Or is something weird going on with basil this year? I have no idea . . . But last week, I got an email from the nursery letting me know that basil was back -- but in limited supply. So I hurried in and snapped up a few plants (but not as many as I wanted because the supply really was limited, and I didn't want to be piggy. . . ).


Trying again.
Because that's what gardening is all about!

Keep your fingers crossed and send the good-basil-juju.


"A dried plant is nothing but a sign to plant a new one."
            --- Priyansh Shah


Enjoy your weekend, and I'll see you on Monday.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Sending all the good basil growing juju your way, but I'm afraid I might not have much. The area where I grew my basil got infected with fusarium and/or verticillium wilt and eventually it spread to almost everything in our garden (tomatoes, peppers, beans, cucumbers, mint, etc.) in NJ. Our tree guy said it may have started from a maple tree that was infected with it for years, and since it's a fungus that lives in the soil there's no real cure. But your new basil looks good and I hope it grows well!


My basil & parsley, in patio pots, are thriving but not flourishing this year. The curly leaf parsley was the worst. I usually have swallowtail caterpillars for a couple weeks of the summer, but even they could see there wasn't much for them here.
They are starting to look better in the past couple weeks. I've been able to use both for cooking. But there certainly isn't enough parsley for tabouleh.
On the other hand, the thyme and oregano are going just fine.


My basil plants (from my CSA) are doing great! I even gave some away... but now I'll be making BASIL BOMBS! Sending good juju to you & your new plants.


My basil looks a lot like yours, not doing well at all this year. Our local nursery has closed for the season, but I've been keeping my eye out for plants at our farmer's market. Good luck with your new plants!


I have had trouble with my cilantro this year. My basil is looking pretty good but I am doing my herbs in a pot near the door because the bunnies have been feasting. And that book - Uprooting - has been such a boost to my way of thinking about the garden. Thanks for the recommendation.


I planted my basil in a pot this year and it's doing well. In fact, I need to go out there and give it a good cutting. You know what's not thriving? The annabelle hydrangea. 4 years in with this one and it's just not growing or blooming. I might have to give up on it and replace it with a limelight.


Maybe” green thumb” just means you have the heart of a gardener, while some of us “brown thumbs” just.. don’t. I tend to think of myself as a brown thumb with some green edges. (If it works the first time I go with it, if it doesn’t, I turn my attention to, say, reorganizing my closet. (Speaking of which FYI Marie Kondo now has her own “collection” at The Container Store - pretty but pricy.). Love hearing about your gardening adventures, however, Kym!


Best of luck with your new basil plants. It's funny how things vary from year to year. Our sugar snap peas yielded NOTHING this year! And peppers and tomatoes are so slow...yet my neighbor across the street has tomato plants that are producing like crazy! I like the basil bomb idea (my friend does that with home-made pesto (both basil and sun dried tomato pesto) YUM!


Thank you for NOT being piggy. Too many people are.

My basil did not do well this year either. It had this weird "blistery" look. I took it up and bought a new plant. When the yard man was here treating the front walk area for ants, he treated the bed where the basil was. So, now we can harvest that one either. He said we could wait "several" weeks, but better safe than sorry. I pulled up that plant too.

I think I'll just buy basil at the grocery store. LOL

People with green thumbs are just more likely to rip up and start over I think. They don't get sad over what didn't work. They just move on to something that DOES!


Here's to not piggy! And I'll bet you used to turn the coffee pot off at work when the pot was low! (Can you see my pet peeve :-) ) Have a nice weekend Kym! xo

kathy b

Today's reminder is a good one for me. The roses I have on my porch were doing great. Then a hideous bug infestation began ....a week ago. I'm trying screens to keep the bugs away. Not sure I am happy with how that changed the scene there.....but I am more aware of that issue now.


It makes me feel a little better about my poor gardening abilities to know that you have occasional fails, too! I hope this basil works out.


This is such a timely post for me. This is first year in a long time that I've tried to grow container tomatoes and so far (knock on wood) things are going well. But its also the first year I've tried growing flowers on my back deck, mostly to attract hummingbirds to the feeder. At first, everything was great. The fuchsias were beautiful, and I actually saw a hummingbird feeding on the flowers. But then MassWildlife told everyone to take down bird feeders due to a mysterious bird disease. And capsid bugs put giant holes in all the leaves. sigh. Another lesson in mindfulness that I really wasn't expecting.

Thanks for sharing. This makes me feel tons better!


Sending you all the good Basil Ju-Ju!! (I won't tell you that my herbs are having a banner year... but I can't get a damned vegetable to grow to save my life!!)


I make basil bombs, too. What a nice thing to have in the freezer!

The comments to this entry are closed.