I’m Rona the new gardener. In the following weeks I would like to share information, tips and even recipes with you all. As herbs are a big favourite of mine I thought I would start with a different herb every week. This week I’m going to write about Rosemary
Rosemary is an evergreen perennial that originated in the Mediterranean. It has aromatic needle-shaped leaves with small blue flowers in spring and summer. Its Latin name means Sea-dew, which may explain why it loves growing near the sea and its flowers appear dew like from a distance.
Over the centuries rosemary has been widely used in cooking and medicine.
The Romans considered it a sacred herb that brought happiness and fertility and Christians associated it with the Virgin Mary.
Rosemary likes well-drained soil in a sheltered sunny area or against a warm sunny wall. It is frost hardy but it is worth protecting young plants in winter with a mulch, straw or fleece. Do not over-water. Rosemary can be grown from seed but I usually propagate them from cuttings in spring or layering in summer as I find this more successful.
Plants can be cut back after flowering in spring but never in the autumn or if there is a chance of frost, as they will die.
If you plant rosemary near carrots it will repel carrot fly. It is also a good companion plant to sage.
Pick fresh leaves all year round but don’t leave the plant bald. Dry the leaves or make an oil or vinegar.
Rosemary has anti bacterial and antiseptic properties. Can be used as a mouth wash and skin tonic. Boil a handful of leaves in 500 ml of water for 10 minutes. Splash on your face to promote healthy skin.
125 g butter (soft)
2-tsp. rosemary sprigs
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. Dijon style mustard
1 Remove leaves from sprigs
2 Blend rosemary and butter
3 Mix pepper, lemon juice and mustard to season
4 spoon mixed butter on to a sheet of plastic wrap that has been lain across a tray.
5 Roll into a log shape. Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.
6 Remove and leave in the fridge ready for use,
Well that’s it for this time and remember