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Basil Plants

Q.indoor basil stinks like cat urine

Zone 48195 | Anonymous added on December 29, 2016 | Answered

Many investigations tell me basil indoors will smell like cat urine. I was also told some kinds don’t. Can you shed some light on my problem? I brought a potted basil indoor this fall. Was doing great but noticed the smell right away. Did not smell up close. But filled the home with Stinko! Sheet the trial days trying to figure out why I dumped it outside. Any info would be great. Thanks for your time. Wayne from Michigan.

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Answered on October 9, 2020

No that is incorrect. This is nothing to do with differences in perception. The cat pee odour in some basil species is well established and signals the presence of undesirable mercaptan compounds (also present in Sauv blanc wine and black currant bud and similar to cat pheromones).

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Answered on December 29, 2016

Some peoples sense of smell interprets the scent as the offensive odor of cat pee.

You can try different varieties of Basil that may be more pleasing to you. Thai Basil, Cinnamon Basil, Lemon Basil or Lime Basil may be options for you.

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