Auburn, Alabama — Rosmarinus officinalis, commonly referred to as rosemary, is an evergreen plant, as well as an herb. The term rosemary is derived from a Latin word and means “dew of the sea”, according to Medical News Today. The sea cliffs near the Greek Islands are a common place for rosemary to be found growing.
Growing rosemary in your backyard is simple. You don’t have to live near the Mediterranean or sea cliffs to grow this herb.
Rosemary can be grown in your backyard in a pot or in the ground, according to Mallory Kelley, a regional Extension agent specializing in home grounds, gardens and home pests for the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.
“Rosemary is great in your garden any time of the year. I think it is a great addition to the landscape as a foundation plant or a border shrub as it stays evergreen,” said Kelley.
Growing rosemary requires full sunlight and the perfect amount fo watering. Kelley says it is important to not overwater rosemary. Overwatering the plant could kill it. Hot and dry climates are considered prime conditions for the Mediterranean plant.
“Cut off a shoot or tip of a branch that is 4 to 6 inches and remove the bottom leaves, about an inch and stick it in the soil and keep it moist. If drying out is a possibility, cover it with a plastic bottle or container to create a mini greenhouse over the cutting and very soon roots will develop,” said Kelley.
Using Rosemary as an Herb
Rosemary is not only an ideal evergreen to use for landscaping, but also an herb that is great for cooking.
“Rosemary is an herb that has health benefits, such as phytonutrients, antioxidant and essential oils,” according to Dr. Onikia Brown, RD an Extension nutrition specialist.
Phytonutrients, plant-based nutrients, appear to lower the risk of cancer and heart disease, according to The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
The herb is also a rich source of potassium, which helps control the heart rate and blood pressure, according to Brown.This may be beneficial in helping to deal with the side effects of stress.
Rosemary is a multipurpose plant that looks great in your backyard but also has health benefits. Next time you are thinking about planting an evergreen, consider rosemary.
For more information on growing herbs, check out this article.