What is eating my herbs?? Please help!!

herbiepMay 6, 2010

I have a fantastic potted herb garden up on my balcony... or at least it *was* fantastic up until this week, when it looks as if something is eating the plants down to nubbins! I tried going outside at night to catch the culprit, but no luck. I'm assuming it's insects though, since nothing else really would be up on a balcony... at least, nothing that would indiscriminantly eat one basil plant of four, marjoram, sage, and parsley (but leave 3 basil plants, not touch the dill...)

Does anybody have any ideas for a natural repellent that I can use to keep pests off my plants??

Any help at all would be greatly appreciated... I've never had any problems like this before!

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Many herbs are natural insect repellants and most often if an insect is eating any plant you will find either the insect or evidence of that insects presence. How far off the ground is this balconey? About the only problem I see with Marjoran, Sage, and Parsley is that rabbits like them. I have not seen, in some 45 years, any evidence of insects munching on mine.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2010 at 8:19AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Many (most) herbs can fall prey to a wide variety of insect pests, including aphids, caterpillars, beetles, and spider mites (which are not insects).

I'd even consider squirrels or chipmunks nibbling on those particular herbs.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2010 at 7:48AM
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suprneko(9b/sunset 16 NorCal, S. Bay)

If you aren't seeing any insects then it might be squirrels. Check in the early mornings and throughout the day, if possible.

A $*(#! squirrel eat my Italian parsley, dill, stevia, green onions and cilantro (in addition to my cucumber, tomato, beans, radish, eggplant and zucchini plants). He can strip all leaves off a plant and leave just the main stem or sometimes he eats that too!

I tried hot sauce spray, it seemed to work for a day or so but some of the plants reeeally didn't like it and withered. I tried it again today but I later saw him eating my squash leaves. Bird netting kept him away for a couple of days but now he's finding a way under it. Fox urine and commercial repellent w/blood didn't work at all.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 12:55AM
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