I remember the good old days (i.e. last year) when I got really excited about every single plant in my garden and monitored for the slightest visible evidence of vegetative growth on each of my plants. Well, I still care and I still think that growing plants are exciting, but I'm going to admit to you all that I've been getting a bit... lazy. Even though my winter gardening responsibilities involve only indoor plants, I haven't spent nearly as much time or effort on taking care of what few plants I have.
One of the near-casualties of the diminished gardening effort on my part involved the potted basil. Remember when I planted some basil cuttings to winter them indoors? They grew really well for a while, and then they almost died because I stopped watering and harvesting them. The plants got too heavy and tall for the grow box, and they they started wilting and drying up from lack of water. I know, I know, I was a totally bad plant mom.
About two or three weeks ago, I felt bad enough and decided to clean up my act. I took a pair of scissors gave my basil a much needed trim. After cutting off all the dead branches and leaves, I was left with a basil plant whose main and most side stems were dried brown. There were very few leaves left on the plant and I didn't think it would make it. I wish I had a picture to show you, but I didn't take a picture of this almost-dying basil.
But now it's alive again! The miracle of consistent watering!
I'm thoroughly pleased to report that the top of this basil plant is busy growing new branches and leaves.
Here (pictures above and below), you can see how the main stem and most of the side branches are dried and brown. I really thought that this basil was toast. But surprisingly enough, there's somehow life in there, and new leaves and young branches are growing out of the dry and brown ones.
I've been harvesting a few basil leaves here and there for things like homemade pizza, pasta and salads. It's not much, but it still allows me to eat something that I've grown myself, and that makes me happy.
Check out Harvest Monday for other winter gardeners' bounty!