Growing Rosmarinus Officinalis, Rosemary Herb
Common name: Rosemary
These are evergreen shrubs, often classed as ‘’. Although there are other species available, it is Rosmarinus officinalis, a native of Mediterranean regions, that is the one usually seen in our gardens. There are also numerous named varieties.
Rosmarinus officinalis grows to around 1.5m (5ft) and has narrow grey-green leaves. In late spring and early summer, clusters of blueappear along the branches of the previous years’ growth. Among the numerous forms is ‘Benenden Blue’, which was originally found in Corsica This is a smaller form than the straight species, with bright blue flowers. It should be given a sheltered spot One that is hardy in all but the most severe winters is ‘Miss Jessup’s Upright’ (AGM), Previously known as ‘Fastigiatus’, it can still occasionally be referred to by this name. Widely available, it has typical blue flowers.
Another worth considering is ‘Sissinghurst Blue’ (AGM), a good blue with a free-flowering habit Plants that can be used as ground cover, or for hanging over a wall, are particularly useful in the garden, and the accommodating Rosmarinus ‘Prostratus Group’ (AGM), with large, dense mats of pale blue, will do both of these.
Soil type Rosemary will grow in most fertile, well-drained soils.
Planting Choose a sunny spot, ideally where it is not subjected to cold winds. Plant in the spring.
Pruning Pruning consists of cutting out any dead wood in early spring. After flowering, shorten any long straggly shoots. Any old bushes can be improved by cutting back shoots to half their length, in early spring.
Propagation This herby shrub is easily increased by semi-ripe cuttings taken during early to mid-summer, or mature shoots in late summer.
Pests and diseases No problems are normally encountered with these shrubs.