When you're looking for an aromatic, full plant to help fill in your landscaping, rosemary may be just the thing you need. It's woody-stemmed, making it durable. The needle-like growth produces an evergreen hedge that actually flowers every year. It thrives in warmer climates, but is tolerant of cold. Here are some tips to help you add rosemary bushes to your landscape installation:
Starting from Seed
Rosemary seeds are slow to germinate, which means you need to start the seeds a couple of months before the weather warms up. Early winter is ideal if you want to create hardy plants that will thrive throughout the summer.
Create a planting mix of sand, light potting soil or vermiculite. Your choice of planting medium is important, because you need something with very good drainage. Make sure that you have more seeds than the number of plants that you want, because rosemary's germination rate isn't as high as some other herbs. Plant more than you think you need to account for this.
Put the seeds on the soil and then cover the surface with a light layer of more soil. Add a little bit of water just to moisten the soil. Place your container in a warm area. Cover the top with plastic wrap to create more heat inside. As soon as the rosemary plants start to emerge from the soil, uncover the container. Place the pots in an area with a lot of light and warmth. This will encourage the plants to thrive.
Once the plants have started to grow, you'll want to keep them inside until they're several inches high and sturdy. Once the seedlings can hold up to the weather and it's warmed up in mid-spring, you can move the plants outside to the area where you want them in your landscape. If you want to be able to keep the plants over the winter, put them out in large containers so that you can just relocate them when necessary.
Caring for the Plants
Rosemary thrives best in an area with full sunlight for most of the day. With regular watering and good air circulation, it should produce bushes several feet tall. You shouldn't need to fertilize rosemary heavily. A light application of a gentle fertilizer in the early spring should be all that's needed.
Harvest the plant as needed by trimming back growth. If your plants can survive the winter, your landscape will be brightened by its blue flowers in the next spring season.
When you want a unique plant that smells as pleasant as it looks, rosemary is a great addition to your landscape. If you enjoy cooking, you can harvest the plant regularly and even dry some of the herbs in the early winter months. With the tips here, your rosemary plants will thrive and stock your pantry for several years.