A Spring Flower With Green And White Strip Leaves Rosemary – A Universal Herb

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Rosemary – A Universal Herb

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is an attractive, evergreen, shrub with glossy green needle-like leaves and a scent similar to pine needles. It is actually a member of the mint family and there are many varieties to choose from; Some dwarf, some upright or prostrate. It has many uses, from cooking to medicine, as well as cosmetic and handicraft making. The small flowers appear in spring and can be pale blue, pink or white depending on the variety you choose.

Growing Rosemary

Rosemary will grow in any sheltered, sunny position as long as it is reasonably dry. It also needs well-drained soil and will be more fragrant if grown in alkaline soil. It is easy to grow as it is pest resistant and will tolerate some drought conditions. It will also tolerate salt, so will grow well in coastal areas, and is also a good potted plant.

Rosemary can also be used for topiary, as it needs regular trimming to stop it going anyway. It is better to prune it after flowering so that it does not droop, and never trim it in winter, as it can be damaged by frost.

uses

Flowers can be picked in the spring for use in potpourri and to make wreaths. The flowers are also used in salads and as a garnish on desserts and puddings. The leaves, or shoots, are used for cooking and you can pick them as needed. Remember that rosemary is a strong herb, so use only a few sprigs and remove whole sprigs before eating. Alternatively, use the leaves and discard the stems before use. Rosemary goes well with lamb or pork but can also be used in salad dressings and marinades.

Rosemary tea is easy to make and has many benefits, including relieving headaches and digestive problems. You leave it to soak in boiling water for at least five minutes and strain before drinking.

storage

Rosemary dries well because of the high oil content in the leaves. You can hang rosemary sprigs in a dry, cool place before removing the leaves from the stems and storing in an airtight container. It’s worth remembering that dried rosemary can have a stronger flavor than fresh rosemary, so use sparingly!

Alternatively, you can freeze rosemary sprigs in a freezer bag for up to six months. To use them, just crush them before they melt.

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