Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:58 pm
They are omnipresent in the herb garden and do not spare even basil. Fighting aphids is nevertheless a double-edged sword. We don’t want to wield the chemical club any more than we want to find aphids in our food. So fight the pests with natural means.
Knowledge of the causes maximizes control success
If the triggering factors for an aphid infestation are known, control starts at the cause and is all the more effective. Otherwise, the pests disappear only briefly and the aphid-free period is short-lived. The pests preferably visit weakened basil, so you should take a close look at the care. Aphids like to strike here:
- in locations with poor air circulation
- where cold drafts and too dark light conditions prevail
- on basil with a waterlogged root ball
Aphids particularly target plants that are stressed by inadequate nutrient supply. If such omissions come to light in the course of investigating the causes, they should be remedied immediately.
How to control aphids on basil sustainably
The long list of environmentally and health-friendly remedies against aphids is bulging with liquid-based recipes. Classics such as the soft soap solution, the milk-water mix or tobacco decoction, however, prove counterproductive on basil. There is little point in watering the herb plant from below and spraying the foliage daily with home remedies for aphids. Here’s how to do it right:
- Inspect mullein daily for aphids on the top and bottom of the leaves
- at the first sign of infestation, pollinate with primary rock flour
- alternatively sprinkle with pure charcoal ash
Both control agents act purely biological and are washed out before consumption. As an immediate measure, a vigorous showering of the pests is possible, provided that the basil plant can dry quickly afterwards in an airy place.
Aphids on basil excrete honeydew, which ants love. So that this sweet source does not dry up, the clever creepy-crawlies defend aphids with vehemence. If necessary, they even drag the beasts to the nearest plant to ‘milk’ them there.
Therefore, lay out lemon slices peppered with cloves. In this way, you disturb the ants’ sense of direction, so that they can no longer find their way to the aphids.
Tips & Tricks
In a natural garden, aphids on basil have a bad hand. Where there are enough retreats for birds, ladybugs, ground beetles or ichneumon wasps,(33,00€ at Amazon*) the pests are immediately exterminated. Already a hollow tree trunk, a brushwood pile, a dry wall or a hedge invite the beneficial insects to stay.