The Veg Plot

Easy multiplication: how to take rosemary cuttings

Rosemary Leaves

Last autumn I was asked to write a piece for another website on the many benefits of using a cold frame. Besides the obvious hardening off and over wintering functionality, their light, warm and sheltered environment makes them an ideal place in which to establish cuttings. To illustrate this feature I lazily took some cuttings and photographed them in situ.

I selected my old rosemary bush as subject matter –  seeing as the dog has chosen it as his new toilet a few new plants wouldn’t go amiss. After the shoot was over I pretty much forgot about the sticks of rosemary so assumed they would wither and perish. But a few months later they’ve survived and rooted. Here’s how I did it…

7 steps to taking rosemary cuttings

1 Snip off a fresh rosemary spring – a bit that has a stem softer than the woody part, about the length of a finger

2 Carefully pick off the leaves from the bottom half of the stem

3 With a sharp knife, cut away the stem that’s immediately below the base of the now removed bottom leaf

4 Fill a pot with damp potting compost and make a hole near the edge

5 If you have rooting powder or liquid (I didn’t) apply it to the end of the rosemary then lower it into the hole

6 Back fill the hole. I covered the compost with a layer of grit, but this was purely for photographic purposes

7 Place in a cold frame (or put it inside a plastic bag and stick in on the windowsill). Forget about it for two months. Marvel at the miracle of new growth.

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