Rosemary can be an excellent choice for herb gardening, because it will thrive regardless of whether you live in a cold or warm climate. One of the reasons it is so easy to grow this herb is that it has very sensitive leaves which do not do well in extreme temperatures. So, before you plant any herbs in your garden you will need to make sure that it will get enough sun and moisture. You can make this more challenging by planting Rosemary in a pot, as it will be placed outside in the winter. However, even if you are planting it in a pot, it will still need to be planted in a sheltered spot with no direct sunlight or cold weather.
One of the advantages to planting Rosemary in a pot, rather than growing it in your back yard, is that it will survive the winter months with minimal loss of leaves. Rosemary plants have a habit of dropping their leaves in the winter. If you want to avoid losing these leaves, you should place them carefully into an airtight container. Make sure you remove them from the windowsill before the first frost falls. It is often difficult to transplant these plants from their original locations due to their susceptibility to freezing damage, so you may have to relocate them during the fall months.
Rosemary can also be grown from seed. A continuous crop of the herb can be obtained by pruning the roots and keeping them trimmed constantly. The leaves will continue to grow until next season, allowing you to continue cultivating the herb. This cultivar is also useful for creating bouquets for indoor decoration.
Before planting your Rosemary plant, make sure that the area where it will be planted is drained, because it is a perennial herb that needs moist soil to thrive. If it were to grow in clay soil, the roots would rot and die. Rosemary roots should be dug up about one to two feet underground to provide them with ample moisture. Once the roots are deeply set, use a fork to remove the roots. Place the root ball into a large shallow dish filled with well-rotted garden compost and water.
Rosemary is one of the few shrubs that do not need annual maintenance, although annual pest control should be included in any gardening plan. Mow the lawn often, but take care not to cut the blades too close to the ground. The leaves can become brittle if the leaves are clipped too short. Prune the shrub regularly, but not after the first frost. Some varieties like St. Augustine prefer a colder climate, so they may not be suitable for colder climates.
After the weather conditions are suitable, you can begin growing Rosemary in a pot. Harvest the main leaves, keep them on the stems or add them to a salad. Remove the dead and damaged leaves and needles. Cut the wood off the growing Rosemary stems, leaving only a couple of long, thin shoots on the main roots and stems.
Place the fragrant leaves and stems inside the pot, press down firmly, and cover tightly with gravel. Allow about six to eight weeks for the herbs to germinate and begin to grow. Rosemary tends to take root quickly, so keep checking the progress of the plants during this time. When the herbs have grown to about an inch tall, transplant them into a separate container to allow them room to grow.
When the growing Rosemary has finished producing leaves and starts to flower, you will need to cuttings. Cuttings will produce new shoots, so it is important to plant them early. Place the cuttings in a shallow dish filled with well-rotted garden compost. Water the cuttings daily as they germinate, then just wait. Within a few weeks, you should be able to transplant the cutting over into its final location.