How to Take Care of Rosemary Plants

Overview

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a wonderfully fragrant and beautiful evergreen plant. This tasty herb is not difficult to grow, and once established it will live a long time if you take proper care of it. Rosemary plants need a lot of sun and do not flourish in cold climates, which is why they are often grown in containers that can be moved indoors. Set a pot of rosemary on your kitchen windowsill and use it to flavor your recipes.

Step 1

Plant or place your rosemary plant (if it is in a container) in a sunny location. Rosemary, like most other herbs, needs 5 to 6 hours of sunlight per day in order to thrive.

Step 2

Grow rosemary in a well-ventilated area. It needs to be exposed to circulating air to prevent the growth of fungi. An open window is ideal for a container plant. If the weather is too cold for that, set a fan near the plant for an hour a day. Outdoor plants should not be overly sheltered by larger plants that might block breezes.

Step 3

Water rosemary sparingly. The herb has fragile roots that quickly succumb to root rot if left in soggy soil. Most problems with rosemary are due to over-watering. Do not water your rosemary plant until the soil is completely dry and has been for 2 or 3 days.

Step 4

Fertilize rosemary once a month with an all-purpose, balanced (10-10-10) fertilizer.

Step 5

Transplant container-grown rosemary once a year, or more frequently if it grows too large for its pot. To transplant, unpot the rosemary plant and trim an inch off the bottom of the roots, then place it in a new pot. Make sure the pot has drainage holes and fill the bottom inch or so with sand or pebbles.

References

  • Backyard Gardener: Growing Rosemary

Who Can Help

  • Rosemary Culture
Keywords: growing rosemary, rosemary plant, herb care

About this Author

April Sanders has been a professional writer since 1998. She has worked as an educator and now writes academic research content for EBSCO Publishing and elementary reading curriculum for Compass Publishing. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in social psychology from the University of Washington and a master's degree in information sciences and technology in education from Mansfield University.