Hello Gardeners of Harringay
Looking for your advice on this.
I've had bad luck planting rosemary of all the things. Everything else seems to thrive but I've had three rosemary plants suddenly die on me, which surprised me.
Should I have been keeping them indoors until they were bigger?
Or did I simply get a variety that doesn't work in local soil? I had them in a sunny, well-drained position.
In which case do you have cuttings to spare from your thriving plant? Or even a tip-off about a local wild bush that also tastes nice that I could take one from? :)
Hi Shariq, rosemary has only two weaknesses really. It is somewhat tender―most varieties suffer damage when temperatures dip below the teens into single figures and it is susceptible to root rot―usually a consequence of poor drainage, often exacerbated by overwatering. That said I've had plants in pots in the past which have survived even snowy winters.
It could be the plants were quite small and not established enough to deal with the conditions outside but I'd wonder if maybe the drainage still was causing an issue if the soil is clay?
You can use any variety really for cooking, but upright kinds with broader leaves contain more aromatic oil. ‘Tuscan Blue’ is the favorite of many chefs, but ‘Blue Spires’ and ‘Miss Jessup’s Upright’ are also good. So is ‘Spice Island’, which is normally sold in the herb section; it grows into an upright, 4- to 5-foot-tall shrub.
I take what I need from my allotment neighbour so am happy to ask if you could take some cuttings if nobody else here has plants to offer.
Hope that helps.
Thanks for your sage (oops!) advice Miguel.
We did inherit a garden that had been indiscriminately trampled for decades so the clay / drainage situation is probably still not that great despite my efforts.
Will give it another shot and maybe only plant a more established plant outside.
If I can't find one I might take you up re your allotment neighbour's cuttings.