Rosemary leaves turning red! Any help?

miranda43January 9, 2007

Hello everybody, some days ago I noticed my rosemary leaves have started turning brown and then red and falling. The problem started from the outside stalks of the plant. It is a potted plant and is in my southfacing balcony. Any suggestions?

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It's probably cold, and perhaps a little thirsty.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 2:09AM
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How old is your Rosemary? I live in South Carolina and here it is a perennial. I had one I planted and it grew huge. I had it for a few years then all the sudden I noticed the plant was dying from the inside out. I was told from a local garden nursery that they will usually only live up to a few years and then die. Though I have one now I planted last summer and a branch or two have some reddish leaves but other then that it very healthy. It could be the cold.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2007 at 9:25AM
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Rosemary should live for at least 30 years. I don't think age is a problem. I'd vote that it's the cold. It really is a heat-loving plant.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2007 at 2:35AM
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murphyl(Metro Detroit)

I'm having a very similar problem on a pair of year-old potted rosemary plants. However, the leaves became grossly enlarged and curled under in addition to turning red, and all this started happening while the plants were still indoors for the winter, so cold probably isn't the problem. Being repotted and transferred outside hasn't helped either of them.

I'm thinking it has to be either a nutritional deficiency or an infection of some kind, as I haven't seen any bugs on either plant. Any ideas?

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 10:45PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Could be fungus gnats. These tiny flies lay eggs and the maggots they produce chew up the roots of plants. You can try a Bt mixture with water around the roots and nearby soil, to kill the maggots bugs off. My indoor seedlings this year started to show a few tiny flies. I set down a yellow sticky trap and caught about 30 overnight. Not sure where they came from and can only assume it was from some left over seed starting mix I had from last sprong. I also water in beneficial nematodes to help reduce fungus gnats in the garden.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 8:53AM
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As with anything, you can be well versed in a plant and still have questions. Here are some thoughts for you:
-check for potassium deficiency- brown spots, sides of leaves curling down could be low K. Get a mild liquid fertilizer just follow container directions
-For my rosemary, I use regular soil mixed with perlite, some peat (has acidic qualities, so not a lot), worm castings (it LOVES the castings), dash of bone meal and a dash of lime (balances the peat). You can buy quality dirt, I just enjoy making my own. RosemaryÂs like to be in an alkaline soil.
-waterÂI just moved my 6 year old rosemary bush indoors since moving to Western MA, before then it had grown happily outdoors in Richmond, VA. Keeping it indoors is new to me, so IÂve been scrambling to keep it happy and watered- check it daily, you might be surprised- I was. I also mist the leaves in the evening, it seems to like it though I may just run a couple humidifiers for the whole family and call it a day.
-Sun, south facing window of course. You can try artificial grow bulbs, canÂt hurt but I wouldnÂt rely on them as the soul source of light.

I could be wrong but I think itÂs low K. My current problem was underestimating the water intake. Home heating wasnÂt in my equation.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2008 at 2:09PM
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