Rosemary or Rosmarinus officinalis is one of the most used medicinal and aromatic plants for cooking, health and beauty. For this reason, more and more people want to grow rosemary at home . Those who have land, such as an orchard or a garden, have it easier to grow this plant, since it grows very easily in the ground. On the other hand, those who live in an apartment or a house where they only have a terrace, balcony and / or windows, need to use pots and the cultivation can be a little more delicate.
We offer you a practical guide on how to care for the potted rosemary plant so that, in this way, it is easier for you to achieve it and take advantage of its benefits.
Composition and properties of the rosemary plant
Among the main components of rosemary we find essential oils, phenols, flavonoids, fibers, potassium, calcium, zinc, magnesium, copper, vitamin B1 or thiamine and vitamin B3 or niacin. This composition allows the following properties of rosemary :
- It is a digestive plant, so it helps to alleviate problems related to digestion and this entire apparatus, such as heartburn, flatulence, heavy digestion, and so on.
- It is used to treat oral problems such as the prevention of cavities, reduces infections and inflammations in the mouth and eliminates bad breath.
- It helps to take care of the liver and the gallbladder, so it serves to prevent and reduce certain problems in these organs.
- It is a very powerful natural antibiotic.
This plant is also widely used in oils, both essential and concentrated vegetable, to improve health and beauty.
Potted rosemary care: light, temperature and humidity
The first thing to know to care for a rosemary plant are undoubtedly the conditions it needs to live in good conditions and grow. Among the conditions that must be taken into account to care for potted rosemary we find the following:
- Adequate light for rosemary: it must receive direct natural light, as it is a plant that needs a lot of sun and light. However, it is necessary to ensure that in times of strong sun the plant does not remain all the hours of heat in direct sunlight, because it will be easy for its leaves to burn. Therefore, in times of high heat and strong sun it is best to find a place with sun and shade and in warm or cold times to find the place with the most natural light possible.
- Optimal temperature for the rosemary plant: this plant can adapt to hot and cold temperatures but, really, the right temperature for rosemary is the one in warm and temperate climates. Thus, it will not withstand hail, frost and sudden drops in temperature well, but neither will areas where the sun heats up excessively.
- Adequate humidity for a potted rosemary: this plant is native to the entire area of the Mediterranean Sea and, therefore, it is used to having times of drought and times with more water, although never in excess. Therefore, it does not need high humidity and with the waterings it will be enough.
Where to place the potted rosemary plant
Knowing the conditions explained above, you can deduce that this potted plant can be fine indoors and outdoors . However, outdoors it is always better if it is planted directly in the ground, where it will grow much more.
Depending on the climate of our place, the exterior or the interior will be more recommended. Thus, in cold climates it is better to keep the rosemary pot indoors , although it can withstand some cold, it is better to avoid frost and significant drops in temperature. Inside the house it is vital to locate the plant near a window, but not close to the glass, as it could be too cold, and avoid direct radiators and air conditioners, as they can dry out it.
On the other hand, if we live in a temperate or hot or even hot climate, it is best to have rosemary outside , in an area where it can receive many hours of natural light, but if the sun in our area heats up enough, it it is best to place it directly in a sunny and shady area, for example under a larger plant or tree or in a place with an awning.
When to water a potted rosemary plant
Another care of rosemary is irrigation, because as we have mentioned before it must be dosed well, as this plant is used to times of drought and wet times, but never in extreme conditions.
For this reason, although there are different irrigation systems , both for plants in the ground or in pots, one highly recommended to care for aromatic plants at home, such as potted rosemary, is the drip irrigation system . This system allows to control very well that the irrigation is of an adjusted quantity and is not excessive.
However, even if you use the most appropriate watering, if there is not a good drainage it will not do much, because the plant can get waterlogged and die. Thus, when you transplant it to the pot you will have to make sure to use a suitable soil mixture and place some stones in the bottom next to the holes, to ensure that the water filters well and does not remain trapped drowning the roots.
Likewise, when the plant is still small and in times of quite hot, you can extend watering to even daily, if there is good drainage, or to every other day. On the other hand, during somewhat colder times, it is best to water the plant between one and three times a week, depending on the temperature.
Rosemary pruning and possible pests
To continue learning how to care for the potted rosemary plant, you also need to consider pruning it. It is convenient to prune a rosemary when you see that it has dry or yellowish leaves and flowers, when you see that it is hardly growing or, when it has parts that are very full of pests, such as aphids or mealybugs. The ideal is to wait for the flowering to finish to do so and to cut just below the part to be removed, avoiding cutting completely healthy parts. In this way, you will see that for the next flowering the rosemary will be beautiful and will fill the place with smell.
The pest on rosemary can be a big problem and, if not eliminate or control, can spoil the plant completely.
Why is my rosemary dry?
If your rosemary plant is dry you will have to review the basic conditions that we mentioned at the beginning. If its leaves and flowers turn yellow and brown and dry, it may be too hot or too cold, or the plant may be drowning.
Make sure it does not have excess heat or direct sun, or cold, or air conditioners or heaters too close to dry it out, or waterlogged earth. In case the plant is drowning, you will not only see the yellowish leaves, but some will turn very dark, even black, will be rotten, and the stems will be mushy.
In these cases, it is best to move it around and prune the dry parts . Also, if the soil is flooded, it will be important that you transplant it and put new soil with adequate drainage .