Saturday, 27 December 2014

How to grow Rosemary

Rosemary is one of our family's favourite herbs. I think we have about 20 bushes of it over both our properties. Here is how to grow Rosemary and some extra tips for how to use it around the house.  

 

  • Rosemary is a wonderful herb to grow in your garden with a variety of uses.
  • Use it dried or fresh with many meats, sauces and soups.
  • Keep rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) well clipped and use it as a border hedge for your herb or vegie garden. 
  • Plant in well-drained soil in sunny location in gardens, or an open potting mix in pots.
  • Plants are slow growing at first, but pick up speed in their second year.
  • While rosemary tolerates partial shade, it prefers full sun and light, well-drained soil with a pH between 6 and 7.
  • Add a slow-release fertilizer to the soil at planting, and reapply in the spring.
  • Keep the soil moist, allowing it to dry out between waterings.
  • Mulch your plants to keep roots moist in summer and insulated in winter, but take care to keep mulch away from the crown of the plant.
  • In the spring, prune dead wood out of the plants.
  • You can even train rosemary into topiary shapes.
  • Rosemary plants are tolerant of salt spray, making them a good choice for pots on the beach.
  • Snip rosemary stems in the soft stems, not the harder woody parts of the plant.
  • Rosemary, olive oil, and a dash of sea salt make the perfect simple dip for fresh bread.
  • Cut stems at any time for fresh rosemary.
  • To dry rosemary, use a rack or hang it upside down in bunches to dry. See more here:
  • Once stems are dry, strip the leaves from them. You can also freeze rosemary sprigs, preserve them in vinegar, or use them to flavour oil or butter.
  • Add a sprig to flavour oils and vinegars or use a bruised branch as a brush when basting roasts. 
 
Dried lavender flowers, basil leaves and rosemary leaves.
 
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