Category: Herbs Shrubs Tropicals and Tender Perennials
Height: 4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
Spacing: 18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
Hardiness: USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 °C (0 °F) USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 °C (5 °F) USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 °C (10 °F) USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F) USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F) USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F) USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F) USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)
Sun Exposure: Full Sun
Bloom Color: Pale Pink Medium Blue Dark Blue White/Near White
Bloom Time: Blooms repeatedly
Foliage: Evergreen Aromatic
Other details: This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds Flowers are fragrant Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Soil pH requirements: 6.6 to 7.5 (neutral) 7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline) 7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)
Patent Information: Non-patented
Propagation Methods: From softwood cuttings From semi-hardwood cuttings From hardwood heel cuttings By simple layering By stooling or mound layering
Seed Collecting: Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
On Apr 10, 2013, MaryandLance from Baton Rouge, LA wrote:
Our Rosemary was one of the original plants we planted that has thrived (upon neglect as others have noted).
As of today, April 10, 2013... it is a huge bush but I've noticed that the inner part of the plant has dead branches and the newer part of the plant has new growth.
On Apr 5, 2013, houstonhort from Houston, TX wrote:
A plant that thrives on neglect! I planted an upright variety and a low forming one, both purchased at the grocery. They were tiny and the only plant I could afford for my new cottage. Wow. Three feet in diameter three years later they thrive with no attention. To bloom? Ignore them. Do not water the leaves and do not fertilize. I am thinking of a little corner garden with only rosemary-all types.
On Mar 7, 2013, PermaCycle from Indianapolis, IN (Zone 5b) wrote:
Rosmarinus officinalis 'Arp' has greater hardiness than rated by the USDA. The main concern in overwintering this herb in zones above 6-7 is not the cold as it is cold moisture. Rosemary does not like frigid "wet feet". It took me several attempts to learn this, but my plants have been very productive since. Here's what to do. Prior to the first fall frost, wrap the plant(s) in row cover. I built an A-frame from two pallets and covered them with heavy duty landscape fabric. After wrapping the plants in row cover the frame was placed over them to protect against moisture. Another method is to surround the plants with bales of straw in a modified cold frame, topped off by a window or shower door. In either case, the plants will survive low freezing temperatures. My preference is for the row cover as the plants receive adequate ventilation throughout the winter.
I have grown the same rosemary officinallis for three years here in Xenia, Ohio. It has done extremely well with little effort and has grown to about 3'5". I decided to change things around and temporarily planted in a pot, and it is not doing so well and its only been 4 days. I did however water it heavily when i repotted. I think this maybe the problem. I love this plant and highly recommend it for my area, and anyone that has a love for herbs. Any suggestions for successfully transplanting an established rosemary would be greatly appreciated.
On May 28, 2012, SallieKr from Cherry Valley, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:
I finally got my rosemary to over-winter this year. I had a large plant last summer which was planted in the ground. I was surprised that the roots weren't really huge for the size of the plant. I dug it up in early December and put in a large pot in a south window, and kept the blinds open all winter. I think that's the key- it needs LOTS of light. In fact, I wasn't turning the plant often enough and one side has a large dead area. Of course, too little or too much water will also kill it. The pot I used was a "self-watering" type, with water in the bottom which is supposed to wick up into the pot. Not sure that works so well, so I watered from the top as needed. My rosemary is now 28" tall & back in the garden.
On Feb 8, 2011, hschulz from Bluffton, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:
I was able to get my rosemary seeds to germinate. At 9 days after sowing the germination rate is quite low (9%). For anyone trying to grow from seed, I did three things: Set the seeds in the fridge for 2 weeks before planting. Soaked the soil and let it dry some a couple fo days before planting. Set tray on a seedling heat mat. My estimate is 25 to 30% germination rate after three weeks.
On Jan 20, 2011, Glorianne from Screven, GA wrote:
Our retirement home has 2 large rosemary plants, They grow on each side of the entry steps in southern exposure. During 5 years here, we have to prune them to maintain access to the steps.
I also break off branches on regular basis to hang near bird feeders for protection for the birds from hawks. I used the "leaves" in cooking until I realized they never softened up enough to be digestible. Research showed me there is more than one kind of rosemary plant. Their fragrance is wonderful
and all who come here enjoy it. I put an 8 inch sprig in water in my east kitchen window and it grew roots. I planted it and in 2 weeks it was dead. I never have been able to get another to root. My other plants flourish with same process. The rosemary has precious blue flowers several times a year.
On Jan 17, 2011, silnik from Manchester, NH wrote:
This plant grows in zone 5 but does not overwinter. this year I had mine in the ground till november then it died. I have grown it indoors in years past on an east window . It lasted a few years but it was a bit thinner ,then in spring I would take it out and it would get thicker , still keeping it in the same pot . Eventualy it died out and I don't know why. Maybe too much water . I have not been able to grow it from seed , I buy the plants every year now.
This plant is suceptible to mildew. I bought one that had it and had to throw it out . I believe it was because we had a very rainy spring and they do like to be dry, even though I kept it in doors on the porch , it did not like the humidity.
It is a great addition to your herb garden .
On Jan 17, 2011, ejanelli from San Francisco, CA wrote:
Rosemary is, as most have written, a beautiful and useful plant. I'm a life-long Californian living both in the Central Valley and, for the last 50+ years, in the San Francisco Bay area, a landscape architect for over 45 years. Rosemary grows well in coastal and lowland California. Cold in the mountains is, of course, limiting. It thrives in the Bay area.
To expand a little on two fronts, first in the kitchen, Rosemary is the classic herb for lamb dishes. It can be thrown in the roasting pan, used the French way in a mustard-olive oil-garlic-rosemary coating prior to roasting lamb, added to stews, and used in the body cavity of poultry the Italian way with a split whole lemon, garlic, and (I like) parsley. Just stuff it in and roast. It's useful in many sweet foods as well as savory. Try simmering it in a light syrup to combine (just the syrup) with citrus fruit - amazing and refreshing. Simmer it with lemon zest in syrup to infuse a warm poppy-seed cake. Use your imagination.
On the design front, it's a most useful plant with the rich, dark green needle-like foliage. It makes a terrific background mass for colored foliage and flowers. Fall colors - deciduous Azaleas, small Japanese Maples, Barberries,Euonymus and so on - are great with a Rosemary background. It's a fine hedge either softly trained to size or formally sheared. Some varieties can grow to as much as eight feet tall. It's a fast grower, so shear or prune it regularly to keep it looking its best. It can be used for formal topiary in containers or in the ground, and there are varieties that can be used to spill over walls or containers. Just be sure the plant gets plenty of sun for this use or it will tend to grow up rather than spill. Give it excellent drainage and plenty of water for a lush look or more limited water if soil is heavy or you want a more mediterranean look (and maximum flavor).
Give it plenty of room in its favored climates, or plan on periodic replacement for smaller-scale uses especially if formally trained. As one writer noted it roots readily, so this is not a big issue. It is not short-lived, but it will show its age and look rougher, even gnarled, like most of us do, with advancing years. Some find this increases its appeal, others simply replace it. Any way you use it it's well worth having in the garden.
On Jan 17, 2011, erinbee from Las Vegas, NV wrote:
The bees and hummingbirds love this plant. In the dead of winter, when nothing else is blooming in my yard, Rosemary is covered in tiny, light-blue blossoms for the bees. I even see the hummingbirds visiting Rosemary for a little something to eat. Truly a marvelous plant. Very easy to grow here in the Mojave Desert.
To grow it successfully in my Houston-area garden, I purchased chimney flues (clay containers open at both ends) in the largest size. This allows the plant better drainage in our torrential rains and with my sprinkler system, even though the bed is slightly raised. Mine is blooming right now. I've found the prostrate variety and 'Arp' cultivar hardier in my 9b garden. I use only a small amount of Micro-Life once or twice a year, but no other fertilizer.
On Mar 17, 2010, magnoliafreakWI from De Pere, WI (Zone 5a) wrote:
I grow Rosemary every year in my garden for cooking purposes and every year I try winterizing it and it dies :( However this past winter i decided to not winterize and just let it be and it is still alive! maybe it was because of a reasonably mild winter here in Wisconsin, but I am still surprised that it made it.
On Jul 7, 2009, kitty_mom from Waverly, GA (Zone 8b) wrote:
I have two second year plants in pots, and they are more like bushes. (I'll have to plant them in the ground pretty soon). The smell is divine and the taste is beautiful. They don't like a lot of water, but other than that they're trouble free.
On May 12, 2009, anelson77 from Seattle, WA wrote:
I have one big old established plant. It blooms from January until about May, and hummingbirds and bees visit it. It is about 4 feet high and 6 feet wide. I prune it lightly about twice a year to keep it in shape. It gets no fertilizer or water and looks great.
I have another about 2 years old. It is still only about a foot high.
On Apr 13, 2009, purplesun from Krapets Bulgaria (Zone 8a) wrote:
To me, rosemary is one of the most beautiful and useful plants. I like the smell of the bruised leaves very much and rub the leaves between my fingers whenever I'm near this plant. The flowers are so dainty and airy that they greatly enhance the plant's appeal when they are present. Rosemary will never have enough of sunlight and heat and grows very fast if provided with the latter.
I grow my rosemary bush against the whitewashed wall of our toilet in good, loamy alkaline soil. It receives a bit of shade from an apple-tree, but only for a few hours in the summer. Has never lost a limb to cold.
I'm greatly fond of Mediterranean plants, especially those that are associated with Biblical realia or Greek myth, so if anyone wants to have a symbol of those times in their yard, they should plant a rosemary bush.
On Mar 11, 2008, dee_cee from Birmingham, AL (Zone 7b) wrote:
I was given an 8" rosemary (trimmed to resemble a Christmas tree) as a housewarming gift in November 2005. I planted it in the back yard the following spring & it's doing great!
After a year I trimmed it & rooted the cuttings & have planted them along the fence to form a hedge. At last count there were 49 plants in what will one day be a beautiful hedge & the original plant is about 3' tall & growing vigorously. I tried several different rooting methods & found that simply placing them in a jar of water works best.
On Dec 25, 2007, gray_53 from Mcdonough, GA wrote:
As welsherblady said, rosemary is excellent when used in abundance on lamb. I find it is also good on steak and as an addition to meat drippings and soups. It can grow to enormous sizes in a matter of years. It took about two years for ours to grow to a size that is big enough to supply plenty of rosemary for the whole family.
On Mar 23, 2007, jabowman78 from Pleasant Hill, CA wrote:
No garden is complete without this fragrant shrub. Planted two a couple years back - one in the ground and one in a pot. The one in the ground took off and looks great and the one in the pot has thinner leaves and a thinner appearance and is also less fragrant.
Ironically, the thin spindly one is covered in flowers, but the one in the ground has never flowered. Some plants do need to be a little root bound or crowded to flower properly (african violets, kalanchoe) so this could be a factor.
Rosemary is a great substitute for white sage as it has the same cleansing properties. To make a smudge stick, simply cut about a dozen or so 6-inch stems of good quality and lay out in the house to air dry. Then, bundle together and tie lightly with 100% cotton thread. The scent is invigorating and it will perk up your mood - also it is less intense than sage and won't leave your home smelling like a campfire for days afterwards. =]
Always remember to exercise caution when burning incense of any kind - NEVER leave unattended.
This is a super easy to propagate from cuttings. I love the scent of it. I have had rosemary for years. But none of mine have ever bloomed. I use a lot of compost to fertilize. I don't really like to use chemical fertilizers. Are there any organic gardeners out there that might be able to tell me why mine never blooms???
On Oct 4, 2004, tjsangel003 from Warren, OH wrote:
I just bought a small rosemary plant today. I love the fragrance. I plan to keep in a pot and put outdoors for summer-I am in zone 5. How big does it grow in a pot? Does it need a lot of sunlight in winter? Also I pinched it back for the winter. I love many herbs and have added this one to my collection.
On Jun 17, 2004, jcangemi from Clovis, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:
Rosemary grows well in the San Joaquin Valley, both in rural and urban settings. Used extensively in city landscaping, i.e. island plantings, etc. Drought tolerance makes it an ideal plant for this valley, as well as a delightful culinary herb.
On Jun 16, 2004, Wingnut from Spicewood, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:
There's an old wive's tale that goes something along the lines of "As the rosemary grows, so grows the woman of the house's authority." My rosemary bush, purchased five years ago as a 4" pot sized plant, is now a four foot tall, five foot wide monster. My husband keeps eyeing it suspiciously every time he picks up his chainsaw. ;)
Although I don't grow it I do find it growing wild on sandy ridges, weedy dunes, and upland pine barrens and scrubs throughout Florida. I use it in soups, sauces, and sprinkled lightly when dried with other herbs and papaya does wonders for cooking oily and/or bland tasting fish.
I have 3 rosemary plants: 2 small babies and 1 medium sized baby, and I love all 3 of them. I have them growing in terra cota pots, and they are so cute in their Christmas dresses! I bought some small snowflake ornaments and some small fake flowers to dress them up like the floral theme of the rest of the decorations. I rate this plant a solid 10 for usefulness in cooking and decorating!
On Oct 21, 2002, welshherblady from Isle of Anglesey,North Wales United Kingdom (Zone 8a) wrote:
Our Rosemary is field grown as well as in pots for cutting and drying for culinary ,medicinal and cosmetic purposes.
A sprig of Rosemary cooked with Lamb adds a delicious taste.Rosemary made into a jelly/preserve can be added to many meals to add an interesting flavour.
Rosemary is said to have a calming and uplifting effect- can be added to bath water in a net bag for this purpose.Rosemary Oil is reputed to encourage hair growth and to be good as a massage for the scalp.
*Rosemary is the Herb of Remembrance*.
We are in Zone 7-b and have used Rosemary (primarily ARP and Tuscan Blue) extensively as a landscape shrub. It is tolerant of sun conditions from full sun to partial shade and also demonstrates a good deal of drought tolerance. It is a fast grower and propagates easily from cuttings. To date we have not had to provide it with any winter protection (our plantings were made with a southern exposure to our house). It is one of our favorite plants; we highly recommend it.
Our success has been best with the erect varieties; trailing and semi-trailing varieties do not seem to be as cold hardy.
On Mar 10, 2001, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:
Rosemary is an attractive evergreen shrub with grayish-green, pine needle-like aromatic leaves. Pale blue flowers last through spring and summer in a warm, humid environment. Plant in well drained, alkaline soil; can be grown successfully in a container. Used in cooking as well as for medicinal and ornamental purposes.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
, (3 reports) Birmingham, Alabama Blue Mountain, Alabama New Market, Alabama Wedowee, Alabama Cornville, Arizona Glendale, Arizona Phoenix, Arizona (3 reports) Fayetteville, Arkansas Haskell, Arkansas , California Amesti, California Berkeley, California Castro Valley, California Clovis, California El Cajon, California Jacumba, California Kensington, California Laguna West-lakeside, California Lake Wildwood, California Lawndale, California Long Beach, California Los Angeles, California (3 reports) Menifee, California Menlo Park, California Merced, California National City, California Palm Springs, California Pleasant Hill, California Sacramento, California San Diego, California San Jose, California Santa Ana, California Santa Rosa, California West Hills, California Wildomar, California Highland Acres, Delaware Bartow, Florida Citrus Ridge, Florida Combee Settlement, Florida Eatonville, Florida Eustis, Florida Fort Lauderdale, Florida Hampton, Florida Haverhill, Florida Jacksonville, Florida (2 reports) Keystone Heights, Florida Lutz, Florida (2 reports) Miami, Florida (2 reports) Naples, Florida Ocoee, Florida Old Town, Florida Oldsmar, Florida Pembroke Pines, Florida Rockledge, Florida Spring Hill, Florida Tallahassee, Florida Umatilla, Florida Warrington, Florida Wekiva Springs, Florida Albany, Georgia Blacksville, Georgia Colbert, Georgia Cordele, Georgia Dallas, Georgia Decatur, Georgia Dock Junction, Georgia Douglasville, Georgia Lawrenceville, Georgia (2 reports) Screven, Georgia Smyrna, Georgia Waverly, Georgia Honomu, Hawaii Cherry Valley, Illinois Indianapolis, Indiana Davenport, Iowa Crofton, Kentucky Hawesville, Kentucky Dixie Inn, Louisiana Franklin, Louisiana New Orleans, Louisiana (2 reports) North Vacherie, Louisiana Old Jefferson, Louisiana Cresaptown-bel Air, Maryland Londontowne, Maryland Valley Lee, Maryland Billerica, Massachusetts Florence, Mississippi Madison, Mississippi Mathiston, Mississippi Saucier, Mississippi Henderson, Nevada Las Vegas, Nevada Manchester, New Hampshire Dunellen, New Jersey North Plainfield, New Jersey Albuquerque, New Mexico Rio Rancho, New Mexico Roswell, New Mexico , New York Deposit, New York West Islip, New York Charlotte, North Carolina Durham, North Carolina Elizabeth City, North Carolina Fayetteville, North Carolina (2 reports) Greenville, North Carolina Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina Oriental, North Carolina Raleigh, North Carolina (2 reports) Silver Lake, North Carolina Sunset Beach, North Carolina Hilliard, Ohio Xenia, Ohio Harrah, Oklahoma Ashland, Oregon Rivergrove, Oregon Jessup, Pennsylvania Conway, South Carolina India Hook, South Carolina Lesslie, South Carolina Mt Pleasant, South Carolina Myrtle Beach, South Carolina North Augusta, South Carolina Clarksville, Tennessee Memphis, Tennessee Abilene, Texas Arlington, Texas Austin, Texas (2 reports) Bastrop, Texas Bellaire, Texas Belton, Texas Blanco, Texas Briarcliff, Texas Buda, Texas Bulverde, Texas Carrollton, Texas Copperas Cove, Texas Eagle Mountain, Texas Fort Worth, Texas (2 reports) Glenn Heights, Texas Grand Prairie, Texas Houston, Texas (3 reports) Humble, Texas Irving, Texas Kingsland, Texas Kyle, Texas Lampasas, Texas Manor, Texas Mckinney, Texas New Braunfels, Texas North Zulch, Texas Paris, Texas Princeton, Texas Robinson, Texas San Antonio, Texas Scenic Oaks, Texas Selma, Texas Sunset Valley, Texas Taylor, Texas Herriman, Utah Lindon, Utah Lake Monticello, Virginia Newport News, Virginia Norfolk, Virginia Issaquah, Washington Millwood, Washington Navy Yard City, Washington Olympia, Washington Renton, Washington Seattle, Washington White Center, Washington Volga, West Virginia