Why should I rotate my indoor herbs?

I'm an absolute beginner when it comes to gardening. I'm growing basil in a pot indoors. It has completly grown to one side (towards the window). Is this bad for the plant, other than that it makes it look ugly?


  • philippa smith2philippa smith2 Posts: 6,186

    It is growing towards the light.......a completely natural process.

    If you can only grow it indoors on a windowsill, keep turning the pot so it grows more evenly.

    If you have a little space outside, gradually harden off your plant ( few hours every day ) until you can keep it outside for the summer.

  • It's not good because it's not natural. Many herbs, especially basil, do best in full sun and in nature they will receive sun from most angles. Growing it with sun from just one angle will cause the plant to grow more horizontally rather than it's natural vertical position. Horizontal growth will reduce the yield and leave the side unexposed to sunlight more open to fungal and other other diseases. A bit like restricting the blood supply to one of your legs - not good!

  • DnDieneDnDiene Posts: 2

    Thanks. I figured that if the plant grows towards the sun it is probably best for the plant, because why else would it do that? But it is probably a harmfull side-effect of something that is helpful for the plant, which is growing towards the sun in nature

    The plant grows towards the window to optimize it's light intake. That's why I'm confused that rotating the plant is apparently better for it's health.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,256

    It's better for its appearance, It's better for long term health of plants if rotated but basil doesn't have a long term. It's an annual that gets eaten before that 

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 43,806

    Also, the side of the plant that gets the most light will grow well, whereas the side that's in shade will not grow as well.  

    In nature the position of the sun in relation to the plant changes throughout the day (well, as you know it's the earth that moves and the sun that stays still  but the effect on the plant is that the light moves around the plant) so in nature, if the plant is in an optimum position,  the east, south and west sides of the plant get direct light, and as the sun will be higher in the sky later in the year, the north side of the plant will get some light then.  

    However, your plant is only getting light from one side, so you need to mimic the effect of the sunlight rotating around the plant by rotating the plant. 

    No-one knows if you've done your housework, but everyone knows if you've done your gardening !
  • Jim MacdJim Macd Posts: 751

    It's also most likely about 10 plants in a pot. Again not good for each plant. Eat it don't grow it. image

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