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Thursday, April 19, 2012

R is for Rosemary

Ah-h-h, the trials a person endures to grow a rosemary. At first, the only way I could tell the difference between it and lavender was to take a big sniff of their distinctively different-smelling leaves. Never being one who had too much success growing from seed, I decided to adopt one of those bedding plants you find in the spring; plush and green, bulging out of its four-inch pot. Be forwarned, you will not relax until it enters the teen-age years.  Moving it into a clay pot helps, but you must be sure it doesn't get too dry or too wet.  When you bring it inside for the winter, be sure to set aside your sunniest window for this plant known as 'dew of the sea'.

If it survives past its third or fourth year, like all young adults it should be encouraged (change that to forced) to move out into the real world and make it on its own. Hopefully, you can provide a spot in the garden that has excellent drainage, receives some welcome shade from our intense Texas sun and will have some kind of barrier to shelter behind when Old Man Winter blows his harsh winds. If this sounds like a difficult plant-child to raise, let me say that is true through the teen-age years only, like most children.

Once permanently established in your garden year-round, you will be rewarded with an evergreen, fragrant shrub that delights you with pale blue blossoms in the middle of February. And, it will continue to bloom off and on way into summer. If you are lacking a garden, let me recommend the prostrate variety. It looks loveliest cascading over a stone wall or spilling out of a wooden barrel. The Botanical Gardens in San Antonio have a gorgeous display of prostrate rosemary as you exit the parking lot and head for the entrance.

So, don't be discouraged; someday you, too, will be able to brag about enjoying the piney fragrance of a rosemary who has been a faithful friend for ten years or more.

1 comment:

  1. Enjoyed the post. Especially liked your corollary between raising children and raising rosemary. Made me laugh out loud.

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