Published on 03/21/00

Rosemary Rewards in Landscape, Too

It's fun just to brush against rosemary in the garden. When you pick up its fragrance on your clothes and skin, you'll reminisce about the good foods associated with the herb.

Rosemary is wonderful for cooking, especially with potatoes, chicken and lamb. You can use the stems for skewers, giving flavor to kebobs.

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Photo: Wayne McLaurin

Decorative in Landscape

This versatile herb is also used in medicines, cosmetics and perfumes. But it's more than useful. It's one of the multi-use herbs that can add interest in your landscape, too.

Perhaps the noblest of herbs, Rosmarinus ("dew of the sea") officinalis is a decorative, hardy, evergreen shrub.

The lustrous, dark-green, slender leaves and upright stems make Rosemary an attractive 4- to 5-foot-high hedge at the end of a stone wall.

Great for Birds and Bees

Cultivated to 18 inches high, it's beautiful in planter boxes on decks or kitchen windows. A creeping variety can also be trailed from hanging baskets or cascaded over walls.

Tiny blossoms, from bright blue to lavender-pink to white, attract hummingbirds and bees. The oily seeds appeal to other birds.

Rosemary is essentially carefree. It requires moderate to little water. It adapts to most soils and is usually pest-free. It just needs well-drained soils and light fertilization. Rosemary loves full sun and rarely freezes in most of Georgia.

Wayne McLaurin is a professor emeritus of horticulture with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.