Rosemary Christmas Tree

Decorated Rosemary Christmas tree in my local garden centre
© Karen Netto (Andrews)

Real Christmas trees are often too tall and wide for modern, compact homes. One surprising alternative is the Rosemary Christmas tree. The shrub has obvious advantages by comparison with the traditional real or artificial trees. Rosemary is turning into the plant personality of the year.

Rosemary Tree Advantages

Decorated Rosemary
© Karen Netto (Andrews)

Rosemary trees are trimmed to a neat conical shape. They can fit into small homes on a table top. They are strong enough to bear a few Christmas lights or baubles. They will scent the room for the Christmas period. After Christmas, you can plant your Rosemary out in a pot on a small balcony, on a patio or in your garden. Forget all the major hassle of disposal. You will need to remember to water your tree, but in return you can add a few clippings to your Christmas culinary masterpieces. Now, what traditional tree can compete with that?

Family Issues

Rosemary
 © Karen Netto (Andrews)

Quite apart from metamorphosing into a Christmas tree, Rosemary has gardeners scratching their heads about another revelation. Family issues are nothing new throughout the land at Christmas. Skeletons come out of closets. Rosemary is no exception. Scientists identified new, close relatives and a name change a few years ago. The news is now filtering through to gardeners.

New Name, Same Plant

The RHS’s Head of Horticultural Taxonomy stated that it was important that the Latin naming system reflects the latest science. Rosmarinus officinalis is now officially known as Salvia rosmarinus by scientists, botanists, horticulturalists and gardeners. She remains Rosemary to all who know and love her.

Rosemary in flower. CC. Hans Braxmeir via Pixabay

© Karen Netto (Andrews)

References and Further Reading

Bowie-Sell, Daisy (2019): Rosemary named a salvia after RHS classification. Gardens Illustrated. 27 November 2019. Last accessed 9 November 2019.

Horton, Helena (2019): Rosemary is not a rosemary, rules RHS – it’s a sage, as they tell gardeners to change plant labels. The Telegraph. 22 November 2019. Last accessed 9 November 2019.

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