Does basil repel or attract aphids???

westpagrowerMay 13, 2009

Can anyone share their experiences with basil and aphids? I've read that basil repels aphids on certain sites and that it attracts them on others.

I was thinking of interplanting some basil amongst my roses. These poor roses were attacked mercilessly by aphids and rose slugs/sawflies last year. Am I helping, or just ringing the dinner bell?

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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

One of the well known companion plants for roses is garlic.


    Bookmark   May 13, 2009 at 10:04PM
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    Bookmark   May 14, 2009 at 9:24PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Caps LOCK.. This, in the old days was considered SHOUTING

    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 1:10AM
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shapiro(5a Ontario)

In our garden, nasturtiums have a way of attracting aphids. The insects are quite harmless, just a bit unslightly. Strangely, the aphids on the roses are most often white and the ones on the nasturtiums are black. Don't know why.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2009 at 10:26AM
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I remember reading somewhere black aphids could be a real problem; don't remember why.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2009 at 4:22PM
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Thanks everyone. Think I'll give it a shot and see what happens. Got quite a few basil seedlings so if a few get chomped, it isn't the end of the world.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 8:46AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Never seen aphids om my bsil. Only on roses.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 6:22PM
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Just try spraying your aphids with soapy water

    Bookmark   May 20, 2009 at 6:23AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Careful using soaps. Castile is about the safest and is part of the neem seed oil mixtures you see.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2009 at 2:51PM
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Attracts. Basil is usually the first plant to get infected during an aphid invasion in my garden. Other herbs that are also affected include celery, parsley, and coriander.

In fact whenever I harvest these herbs, the smell of the cut attracts aphids, and I will find them soon on the plant within one or two days.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2009 at 2:00AM
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aphids are NOT harmless! they damage and can kill your plants.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2009 at 8:11PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Here, I usualy see aphids eating the leaves of my roses. They aslo tend to stay at the base of flower buds. I released lady beetles a few years ago, and they do a good job at keeping aphids down. I confirmed this yesterday a I saw several lady beetles on the rose bushes. The beetles dont usually eat aphids, but their larve do.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2009 at 11:40AM
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Patches(Southern Ontario-7)

This is an old thread but it was very helpful to me so I'm adding to it. The dreaded aphids have struck my little garden and I just threw out quite a few nasturium plants. I couldn't find any chives or marigold in my immediate neighborhood and going further afield to buy ladybugs is tough as I don't drive. So I'm going to put a few garlic cloves in with the rose plant and a friend is digging up some chive roots for me tonight and I'll put that in amongst the basil. Dreadful pests to get rid of. Should have known better though and been prepared with this heat wave we're having. Next year (oops ... sounds like my own echo!) BTW ksrogers CAPS LOCK is still considered 'shouting'. I'm not sure why people do it but it's probably not intentional. A friend does that sometimes mostly because he says he's lucky to find the right keys, never mind the case!

Anyway thanks to all of you for this information.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2010 at 5:30PM
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madferret(UK 8b-9a)

Actually in the old days, caps lock was all you had, there was no lowercase :)

    Bookmark   July 11, 2010 at 9:02AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

Whoever here said that aphids don't eat mint or basil, could be correct, but SOMETHING eats and loves!! My mint looks terrible! Every leaf is bitten. Same with basil. whatever it is, loves mint and basil! It's hard to find a leaf that something didn't get to before I did!!

    Bookmark   July 11, 2010 at 3:22PM
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flora_uk(SW UK 8/9)

Aphids certainly go for my basil. But they don't actually eat it. Desertdance, if there are holes in the leaves of your plants it's not aphids doing it. They are sap suckers. They cannot bite. They will cause distortion but not holes.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2010 at 4:29PM
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lily51(OH 5)

Do not usually have aphids, so I am lucky; but then i have no roses. And yes, aphids are notorious, damaging pests of plants in the garden and in the greenhouse.

someone told me to plant basil as insects don't like it.
that's not entirely true of all insects...

We do have Japanese beetles which are very damaging. They like some kinds of basil, some ageratums,hollyhocks, zinnia. They do not seem to bother statice, geraniums, marigods, or impatiens.

So far I have used Sevin to get rid of them...anything else besides capturing them and putting them in soapy water? Was hesitant to use soap sprays.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2010 at 2:58PM
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Ants farm aphids, I guess aphids excrete a sweet enzyme. You might try inviting an ant hill to farm near your roses.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2010 at 7:10PM
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With all due respect to scarletdaisies . . .

Introducing ants will not diminish the aphid population. Ants do "farm" aphids for their secretions. But ants don't kill aphids--they just take advantage of them. If they killed them, there would be no more aphid secretion to harvest. I usually find the aphids by noticing the number of ants on a plant.

I've never had aphids on basil, but from the other responses, sounds like its possible.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2010 at 9:28AM
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Could it be grasshoppers? There are lots of grasshoppers, from teeny tiny to bigger ones, on my mint. The leaves are chomped on, but not to the point of unsightly. I figured they're not doing any harm. Or are they harmful?

We have a ton of spiders, I think because of the ants. I have a phobia (or just a strong dislike maybe) of both. Read about a mixture of equal parts molasses, sugar, and yeast. Mix and put on a cardboard piece near the ant trail. It seems to have helped.

I'm Hopeful! :-)

    Bookmark   July 22, 2010 at 2:43PM
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Shule(about 4a)

Aphids can spread diseases to plants (including fruit trees and roses).

Also, aphids can weaken your plants. It's not that noticeable when you only have a few aphids, but they do weaken plants.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2014 at 6:00PM
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I plant Cilantro/Coriander as a companion plant to my roses, along with other suggestions in previous posts.


    Bookmark   December 2, 2014 at 11:15AM
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