How To Grow Rosemary In Pots

What Is RosemaryGrowing Rosemary In PotsBest Type Of PotRosemary ContainerRosemary In WinterPlanting RosemaryGrowing QuicklyPot vs FreelandBest SoilFAQ

Growing rosemary plants in pots might be the most common way to go about growing the herb. It’s great because you can move it around to get more sunlight or sometimes less sunlight. 

Below we are discussing some of the techniques and methods we have developed during the years to really get a rosemary seedling off to a great start in a pot. It’s low maintenance and provides you with quite a lot of harvests through the year too.

Rosemary Plant
Rosemary Plant

What Is Rosemary

Rosemary is a very common culinary herb that sees great use all across the globe. It has a very pleasant aroma to it, almost reminiscent of eucalyptus or citrus fruits. 

The herb has a long history of being used in cooking but before that, centuries ago it was more common to use it for medicinal purposes. It was blended to give off a calming feeling and numbing pains. Besides being used in medicine it was also a big part of aromatherapy and sometimes in ceremonies where it was ignited and the fumes inhaled.

But nowadays it’s more common to grow it at home in the kitchen or the garden and clip off a few twgs whenever you need to. It’s hardy and can manage fine when there are periods without a lot of nutrition of water in the soil.

How To Grow Rosemary In Pot

The rosemary plant is very simple to grow in a pot. You could in fact grow it like this for its entire lifetime. All the way from a small seed until it is a full grown rosemary bush. 

Make sure you have a loamy soil that is well draining. You can check that by pouring water over the top and seeing if it’s dripping down and into the soil or staying at the surface. A soil with bad drainage would have all the water stay at the top. 

Bad drainage means that the roots will get too much water and no oxygen, resulting in them starting to drown eventually. This is very serious since the rest of the plant won’t get any influx of nutrition to it.

Plant the seed slightly below the surface of the soil and the lighty pack some soil on top. Water the surface lightly and try to aim for a damp texture to the soil. Place the pot in a sunny spot, a south facing window will often do very well. 

Keep an eye on the soil and water whenever you start noticing its crumbly and cracking at the surface. It should be slightly damp for the rosemary to grow well. It ensures the roots are able to get nutrition to pass on to the rest of the plant without any issues.

After about 6 months you might be able to take your first cuttings. The reason we wait this long is to not cause any unnecessary stress to the plant before it establishes itself.

Best Type Of Pot To Grow In

There are many different types of pots out there to choose from. But the one we have used for rosemary and any other herb for that matter are the ones with a small hole in the bottom. These are the best ones since they easily drain away any excess water.

As for the quality of the pot, that’s up to you. They will all function the same way if they have a small hole in the bottom. But the decorative aspect of them will differ of course a little bit. Some of the fancier and more expensive pots will actually prevent any form of damages from the soil on them. They sort of repel the soil by having it not stick on them. If you were to take the soil out and rinse them they would look brand new basically.

Rosemary Container Care

If you are growing your rosemary plant in a container then you most likely haven’t had it there for very long. These small containers are great for growing a lot of small seedlings efficiently and then repotting them to a new place. 

The same principles apply here as any other form of growing rosemary. You want the soil to be kept slightly damp all the time, whilst also ensuring the plant is getting a lot of sunlight. We strive for about 8 hours each day. That way we can ensure the plant will have energy and continue to grow.

Rosemary Plant
Rosemary Plant

Keeping Potted Rosemary For Winter

Rosemary growing in pots is very versatile like we have mentioned already in this article. It’s great because we can basically move the plant around to whichever place we see fit. If it’s getting too much sun then we have the ability to move it to a shadier area. 

During the winter when the temperatures are decreasing then it’s a great idea to move the plant indoors instead. We do this because it will go a lot faster the next year for the plant to begin growing when we place it outdoors again. The plant won’t use as much water during the winter so you might not have to water it more then once every other week or so.

Planting Rosemary In A Pot

Planting a rosemary seedling in a pot is actually very simple. You start out by making sure you have good soil in the pot. That basically means it should be rich in nutrition and well draining. We said that rosemary doesn’t normally need nutrition, that’s more true after it has established itself. In the beginning it’s good to have a healthy soil.

Make a small hole in the soil and lay the rosemary seedling in there. Make sure the roots get covered by soil when you pack it down. See if the plant is stable or if it will fall over easily. Water the surface lightly and place the pot in a sunny place. 

Will Rosemary Grow Quickly

Rosemary is not known exactly to be the fastest growing herb out there, especially not compared to the likes of basil or oregano. But in the long term you will get a large amount of harvest if you care for your rosemary plant. 

The thing is that rosemary can be a lot older than most other herbs, meaning it will eventually be large enough to provide more than enough harvests for us. After planting a rosemary seed it will normally take about 6 months before you can get any meaningful harvest from the plant.

Pot vs Freeland

The argument between either growing rosemary on freeland or in a pot can be brought down to the climate and environment you are in. If the temperatures stay high all the year around then growing it on freeland is very possible. 

But if the soil is freezing hard during the winter, then it might be better to simply grow the rosemary in a pot and store it indoors during the colder months. That way you can easily place it outdoors when the temperatures are good again.

Rosemary Plant
Rosemary Plant

Best Soil For Rosemary In Pots

The best soil for rosemary plants in pots is a loamy soil. That basically means a soil which is not storing too much water. Instead it lets the excess drain away. This is vital since the roots will otherwise have a very hard time growing in the soil and might drown instead.

The best way to see if the soil is well draining is by watering and looking for any pooling at the top layer of the soil.


Pruning Rosemary In Pots

Pruning a rosemary plant will be the same if it’s on freeland or in a pot. We never want to cut away more than 1 third at a time. You could cut away more, but it will take such a long time for the plant to once again regrow to its former self.

Growing Rosemary In Pots Indoors

Rosemary is a great herb to grow indoors, just like oregano or basil is too. We like to keep ours in the kitchen. Water the soil about once a week and dont cut away too much at a  time from the plant.

How Big Does Rosemary Grow

Rosemary plants can actually grow rather large if they are left to their own and we keep it healthy and thriving. Somewhere between 2 – 3 feet tall is not that uncommon. At this point it will be a rather large bush that we can prune quite liberally.

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