There’s no mistaking the fragrance of this wonderful herb. It makes sense that it is a member of the Lamiaceae family, which includes other aromatic delights like basil, mint, lavender, thyme & more! The botanical name Rosmarinus officinalis, translates to “mist of the sea”. The grey-green foliage of this hardy shrub is thought to resemble the fog against the Mediterranean coastal cliffs, where it is native to. Because it thrives in a climate with dry summers and mild, wet winters, Rosemary is widely grown throughout Southern Europe & our beautiful West Coast.
Ancient Cuneiform stone tablets from 5000 BC were found mentioning Rosemary. It was also later documented to be used during early Egyptian burial rituals, by Greek & Roman botanists, and in traditional Chinese medicine. Eventually, this easy-to-grow, attractive & useful plant was cultivated in gardens throughout the world hence making its way onto many heirloom recipes.
Rosemary oil is now commonly used in perfumes, shampoos and cleaning products, worldwide. It is also proven to have many uses medicinally, which include as an anti-inflammatory, for digestive relief, improving memory, cancer prevention & treatment and many more. Of course, the flavoring of Rosemary in cooking makes it a staple in almost every kitchen. It is my “go to” grilling herb.
The prolific blue (sometimes pink or white) flowers & various forms, make Rosemary a diverse addition to just about any landscape. They do best with well-draining soil and lots of warm sun. Upright forms make great hedges or screens. Spreading forms are a hardy, fast-growing groundcover, or an attractive “spiller” in containers. Because they can bloom throughout the year in our climate, any form will attract bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and people.
We supply many varieties of Rosemary year-round, in different sized pots. ‘Barbeque’ and ‘Tuscan Blue’ are excellent tall forms. ‘Huntington Carpet’ and ‘Irene’ are a couple of our favorite spreading forms. You can take a look (and a whiff!) of them in our Organic Herbs, 4” Sun, or the Sun Shrubs Sections.
Have fun in the Garden!