Basil plant growing in a raised garden bed
Home - Garden
The Perennial Herb That Will Help Your Roses But
Harm Your
Basil & Why
Common rue is a perennial herb with a strong odor that repels pests like Japanese beetles and fruit flies, while its vibrant yellow flowers attract butterflies to
the garden.
These qualities make rue an excellent companion plant for roses and raspberries. However, when planted next to basil, it can turn the culinary herb short, stubby, and scentless.
Research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry reveals that rue emits phytotoxins, which can inhibit nearby plants' growth by preventing cell division.
Planting these herbs side by side not only stunts basil's development but also changes its flavor, turning the typically sweet and pungent leaves bitter under rue's influence.
Moreover, basil thrives in moist, well-watered soil, while rue prefers drier conditions and is prone to root rot in damp environments, which exacerbates their incompatibility.
To reap rue's pest-repelling benefits while ensuring basil's healthy harvest, consider planting these herbs in separate containers or garden beds, ideally far from each other.