The Secret to Keeping Rosemary Alive Indoors

The Secret to Keeping Rosemary Alive Indoors

Not everyone has the finances to grow numerous plants or even form their own garden. However, you don’t have to throw enormous sums of money to grow beautiful plants. Actually, you can do that for free!

Yes, planting plants for free is quite successful and popular. How can you do it? The simplest way is just cutting or clipping stems or other bits of certain plants from some place you know they have it. It can be from your neighbor’s garden or you could’ve accidentally discovered it on your way to work.

Either way, the procedure afterwards is very simple. Go home and put the parts of the plant in a glass of water, change the water every day, and one day you will get surprised to see roots growing from it.

Then you can continue the process of planting it in your beautiful garden. Various plants can be grown in this absolutely free and easy way, but bear in mind that some plants will grow better than others. Plants need nurture and you should take good care of them.

Growing Rosemary for free

One of the plants that can easily be grown for free is rosemary. You will never have to buy a new plant every year, or starting the plant from seeds, but, instead, you can grow it from simple stem cuttings.

You just need to look for an established mother plant and then plant the new rosemary in containers. You can keep it indoors in winter and outdoors in summer. It is a fact that the rosemary that you plant from cuttings will mature faster than a plant started from seed. In fact, it will become a good size after a few months of growing and nurturing.

Believe it or not, you will have a clone plant looking exactly like the mother one, with the same disease resistance, same flavor and growth. In case you wondered, a single plant won’t be ruined after a number of cuttings you have done. It will stay healthy and looking fresh.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a perennial herb in USDA Hardiness Zones 8 or warmer. This perennial can be planted in a garden and usually grows 4 feet tall and spreads around 4 feet wide. Growing it in a container will help you to bring it in if you are gardening in a colder zone. Keep it outside during the summer, but protect it during the winter. During the winter it is best to put it on a south-facing windowsill and patiently wait for spring when it will flourish again.

How to Grow Rosemary and Other Perennials from simple Cuttings:
1.Select new shoots from the mother plant:

It is quite important that you choose only healthy stems with fresh growth. You will recognize them by their green color and being quite flexible. Whenever you can, avoid the older stems, which are brown and woody.

2.Take cuttings:

Clip the stem using sharp scissors, around 5-6 inches, measuring from the tip towards the base. Don’t worry too much about the measurements, as long as you take enough stem that will be good for rooting as well as being tall enough to catch some light in order to grow. If you please, you can cut some extras in case the process of rooting fails.

3.Be careful where you cut:

Take a cut right above or below the point where you know that leaves attach to the stem. This is quite important because leafing and branching points of the plant are made up of the so called meristematic tissue. This tissue, if you remember from your biology class, has important cells responsible for the new growth of the plant. In fact, the tissue is the origin spot of the new stems, leaves, flowers, and roots. The tissue between branching and leaf points in the center is quite different (somatic tissue) so be careful.

4.Prepare a 50/50 mixture of vermiculite and perlite:

Stir and add water so that it becomes wet. This sterile mixture will bring enough moisture and also allow drainage, preventing bacteria or fungi at the same time. Also, some plants may propagate well in garden soil or compost, so feel free to use that one as an alternative to experiment and grow the plant.

5.Remove the leaves:

Now you need to get rid of the leaves from the bottom half of the stem. They will come off very easily, in the case of rosemary. If you are dealing with other types of perennials, you may need to pinch off leaves. After removing the leaves, you can dip the stem in rooting hormone (liquid seaweed). This is optional.

6.Put the stem in the mixture: Place the stem gently into the mixture up to where there are still leaves.

7.Find the perfect conditions: The cuttings should be not exposed to direct sunlight, but they need warm climate to survive.

8. Maintain humidity and warmth:

In order to make a mini greenhouse, cover the cutting with a simple plastic bag or a mason jar and also leave a little air to circulate so that warmth is kept. You can also prop up the plastic bag with pencils and remove the cover when temperatures get higher than usual.

9. Maintain the moisture of the soil: Water at least once a week, depending on the temperatures.

10. Cutting should be tested for 3-4 weeks: After 3-4 weeks, check whether the plant survived and if there are roots growing out of it. If it failed, the cuttings will be brown and shed needles.

Repot: Now it is time to either repot or move the cuttings in the garden. It is best to mix equal parts all-purpose potting soil and sharp sand to repot your cuttings. When dealing with a rosemary plant, make a 3-4 inch hole into the soil using a pencil. Then place the cutting in the hole, cover it and water. Wait until the roots are established before you move it to direct light and be careful not to overwater it.

You can use the fresh or dried rosemary in any way you like. Here are our suggestions:

In cooking

In general cooking
You can use rosemary in anything you like because it will give a special kick to your food. Add it to quiches, stews, roast. Add it to your juices, salads or drinks and enrich the taste of your every plain dish.

Infused olive oil
Cut 4 or 5 stems of Rosemary and add them in a cup of olive oil. Put this mixture on a stove and simmer over medium heat for five to seven minutes. Then let the infused olive oil to cool. Pour this mixture into a bottle. Seal the bottle and season every salad or food whenever you like. This can also be a great idea for a gift to someone who just loves rosemary taste.

Rosemary salt
Add a cup of rosemary leaves to three cups of salt. Stir this mixture well, cover it and let it sit for approximately two weeks. You can use this infused salt on any dish that you like. Grilled fish, roast vegetables, chicken will be enriched with a new flavor by adding this salt to them.

Rosemary honey
Put a cup of honey in a small pot. Then add five rosemary springs to it. Put the pot on a stove and simmer for about five minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool for about 45 minutes. Remove the rosemary springs and pour the honey in a container. You can use the infused honey on your toast, drizzle it over goat cheese or brie or to sweeten your tea or juice.

Soups and sauces
When it comes to sauces rosemary is certainly the right choice. When you are making marinades you can’t make a mistake combining rosemary with garlic, citrus, butter, peppercorn, olive oil, balsamic vinegar or even port.

While in soups the herb pairs well with roast mixed vegetables, sweet potato, potato, chicken, chickpea, zucchini and the list goes on.

Rosemary lemonade
Put a cup of water into a pot and add 2 ½ cups of sugar. Put it on the stove and heat it until it boils. Remove it from the heat. Add 9 springs of rosemary into the pot and let it steep for 30 minutes. Then strain the mixture and add it to ½ cup of lemon juice and 4 cups of cold water. Let it cool for some time. Taste it and add some sugar or water according to your preference.

Detox your body by adding a few springs of rosemary in a bottle of water or give your cocktails a kick by adding rosemary.

Stay hydrated during the summer with rosemary and grapefruit infused water or sparkling rosemary limeade. Add some lemon and rosemary into your iced tea. You can also try a blend from apple, pear and rosemary to stay hydrated all summer long.

Relax at the evening after a hard day at work with a rosemary gimlet gin or a lemon and rosemary bourbon sour.

As a medicine

Rosemary essential oil
Use rosemary essential oil to relieve yourself from anxiety, indigestion, joint pains, cold, flu, headache, bad circulation and much more.

You can easily make your own rosemary essential oil. All you need to do is infuse your rosemary leaves in carrier oil like jojoba or olive oil. Put the oil in a jar and leave it in a sunny position for three to six weeks. You can use this oil for mental clarity, aching muscles and relaxing massages.

Relieves congestion
If you are suffering from a stuffed up nose or chest congestion rosemary is the right remedy for you. On the one hand is guaranteed to bring you relief and on the other it’s completely safe.

Boil some water in a pot or kettle and transfer it immediately into a large heat proof bowl. Add two spoons of fresh or dried rosemary and stir well. Cover your head with a towel and lean over the bowl. Breathe in the vapor for up to ten minutes. Rosemary is natural antiseptic that helps open nasal passages.

Relieves the pain

Prepare yourself a rosemary tea to relieve the pain of heartburn and intestinal gas. Apply some rosemary oil topically to help lessen the severity of toothaches, eczema, headache, joint or muscle pain or gout.

These analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of the rosemary were recognized by the German Commission E (the scientific advisory board of the German version of the FDA) and they approved rosemary essential oil as good treatment of muscle pain and arthritis.

Improves cognitive performance
Boost mental clarity and enhance cognitive performance by sipping on a cup of tea or by diffusing essential rosemary oil around your home.

This amazing herb will also prevent the aging of your brain, and will help you keep sharp even in your old age. This is due to its carnosic acid content which fights off free radical damage.

As beauty product

Healthy scalp and skin
Sooth skin irritations like acne or eczema by adding some rosemary essential oil topically. You can also use rosemary essential oil to speed up healing of wounds and bruises.

Mix ½ cup olive oil with ½ cup of dried rosemary and put them in a saucepan. Put the mixture on a stove and warm it up. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let it steep for 20 minutes. Then strain the mixture and pour it in a bottle. Use this mixture as a hair mask. Soak your scalp with it and cover it with a towel or a shower cap for 20 minutes. Then rinse with cool water and shampoo your hair as you normally would.

Natural deodorant
Include more herbs like rosemary, basil, parsley, mint and sage to your meals and stop using your chemical laden deodorants which are harmful to your health.

Strong and shiny hair
Improve the health of your hair with rosemary and nettle combination. This great shampoo will help you get rid of dandruff and will also stimulate blood flow which will speed hair growth with regular use.

Moreover, a research has shown that certain essential oils including rosemary improve hair growth and hair quality by removing impurities, unblocking hair follicles and stimulating the scalp. Add some rosemary, lavender, thyme, cedar wood, and peppermint into your shampoo and massage it weekly into your scalp.

Fresh breath and healthy teeth
Fight off bad bacteria which are responsible for tooth decay and gum disease and even get rid of the bad breath by using rosemary’s antimicrobial properties.

Add a few drops of rosemary oil to your regular toothpaste or make a potent mouthwash by boiling four rosemary springs into two cups of water.