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My basil plant has grown some purple leaves.

Searching on the internet, I found 2 possible explanations, either flowering or cold weather. However, I am not sure if this is indeed flowering as it only affects a very small part of the plant. Also, the weather was not particularly cold where I live.

So, what are those purple leaves? Should I cut the whole affected section?

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    The picture shows no purple leaves, but purple flower stalks only. Completely normal, but letting leafy culinary plants flower reduces leafiness. Commented Apr 7 at 23:49

2 Answers 2


I suggest that, by accident, more than one cultivar of basil was seeded by the grower.

Just cut the purple ones at the base as they are going to seed and will die after flowering.

You can put the purple basil to good use in the kitchen


Personally, I would take cuttings, remove any reproductive growth as the information in the first answer is very true. Use weak (100ppm max)indole-3-butyric-acid, let sit for 15 seconds, no more and run some experiments. If you breed that with green basil, the anthocyanin and carotenoids will make for some interesting cultivars. But I’m not sure you’d want to get that involved.

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