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Basil 911

Basil, a wonderfully aromatic, deliciously useful culinary addition is a great plant to have in your kitchen. Basil oil has been studied to have antioxidants, anti-cancer, antiviral and anti-microbial properties. And best of all since all it needs is a bright windowsill, many people love to grow this herb right in their own homes.

But what happens when your beloved basil starts to look a little less than sprightly? Though your plant might look dead, as long as there is even a small amount of green left, all it might need is some TLC.

1. Check the leaves. If there are small bites, it might be a pest problem. Spray them with a mixture of soapy water with a teaspoon of jalapeno pepper juice to keep those little buggers away.

2. Check to be sure that your plant is not root bound. Hold the plant near the roots, flip it over and slide the plant until you can see the root system. If they are closely intertwined, you should replant it in a larger pot, with fresh soil and organic fertilizer to give it some space.

3. Remove any brown or discolored leaves. If necessary, cut your plant down to 1/2 inch from the soil. Water well with a compost tea made of crushed egg shells, coffee grounds, and tea leaves. Put your pot in a bright sunny spot and watch it flourish!

Once your basil plant is back in good health, be sure to trim you basil plant regularly from the top to keep it growing strong and full! Use the trimming to season your favorite dish.