The rise of rosemary
PUBLISHED: 09:57 29 March 2016 | UPDATED: 09:57 29 March 2016
Plant specialist Keith Clouting of Taverham Nursery Centre tells us whats smelling sweet this month
When walking through the garden at this time of year, a plant which for me always conjures up thoughts of warm sunny days ahead is rosemary. I never walk past without giving it a squeeze and smelling its familiar invigorating scent. A favourite variety I grow is R. officinalis Miss Jessopp’s Upright which, as its name suggests, has good vertical growth and does not sprawl around, which also makes it suitable for a hedge in coastal and sheltered locations. In spring and early summer it bears light blue flowers over a long period. A good lower-growing variety is Blue Lagoon, growing to a height of around 45cm and spread of 90cm with flowers of a beautiful deep blue. There are many other good varieties worth trying, including the white flowered R. officinalis Alba and R. Prostratus which makes a good specimen for a container or trailing over a sunny wall.
All rosemarys prefer a sunny spot in well-drained, preferably poor soil (if your soil is on the heavy side, add plenty of grit before planting). Container plants also need a well-drained mix, and don’t overfeed as this will reduce flowering. Among good companion plants for rosemary are the later flowering caryopteris, salvias and Perovskia atriplicifolia.