The Q&A Archives: Growth rate of Rosemary

Question: I have had a small Rosemary plant since August of 1997. It has only grown about 2 or 3 inches since I have had it. (I keep it inside). I want to try and grow it to small "tree" size like the ones you see in the nursery. Does it naturally grow slowly or do I need to do something to get it to grow faster? I feed it a weak solution of 15-30-15 with every watering.

Answer: Rosemary grows slowly in containers, and it's fussy anyway! It can take several years to grow one to the size you see in nurseries. It prefers to grow in well-drained, slightly alkaline garden soil where its extensive root system can spread. If you must grow it in a pot, use a large terracotta type, filled with a porous soil. It requires frequent watering, but doesn't tolerate wet feet (hence the need for porous soil), and appreciates moderate humidity, so mist it every other day during dry times. You shouldn't need to fertilize the plant, either, if you enrich the potting mix with a bit of compost or composted manure, and topdress the soil with compost twice a year.<br><br>Seedling-grown plants aren't as vigorous as those grown from cuttings, so that may be another cause of slow growth. Hope this info helps!

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