Rosemary with Red Blossoms

herboholicMarch 17, 2008

I have several healthy rosemary bushes (one of my favorite herbs), but this one is unlike the others in that it is showing red blossoms instead of the usual light blue to voilet ones I'm used to seeing.

Anyone have a plant like it?

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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Mine has never flowered. I start it from primed seeds and it dies every fall. It may be that the strain of rosemary is different. There are several strains out there that have similar smell and flavor, but the leaves on some are larger and are angled closer to the stems. Mine looks like a type thats very fragile if it were to winter over, as it just doesn't survive in Z6.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 8:58AM
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herboholic

That's too bad, ksrogers. I'm in zone7 and never thought I'd be able to winter them outside, but I took a cue from my neighbor who had a healthy plant in the ground that survived many winters, some with snowfall.

So I left mine out all winter. Some tips did get brown. No big deal. The bushes are so large now a few brown tips here and there are easy enough to pluck off.

Besides the one that is blooming red, the other ones have those gorgeous baby blue blooms on them. Some stalks are just covered with them, making them look fluffy and they smell incredible! Some of the stalks are over 3 feet long now. I love my rosemary.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 10:25AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Z7 has a milder climate. Here, because of the nearby Atlantic ocean, I am at the edge of Z6 and Z5.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 4:35PM
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Daisyduckworth(Aust)

My rosemary is constantly in flower, all year round (in the subtropics). It has pink flowers, not the usual purple ones. I've never seen one blooming red, though!

The prettiest rosemary I've ever had was a variegated one. Until it reverted.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 5:03PM
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herboholic

I tried to post a picture of the bloom in macro, but the link didn't work. Will try again later. I understand the forum may be experiencing some difficulties (?).

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 6:12PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Try PHOTOBUCKET, its free. Then copy/paste the middle link text into a post here.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 10:03PM
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herboholic

ks....in my first post I did copy/paste the middle link into the text in hopes of sharing the photo via PhotoBucket, but it didn't work.....the pic didn't show up. I use PHOTOBUCKET all the time, but never ran across any trouble until today.

I really would like to share the picture, as the bloom is bright red, unlike anything I've seen before (it's my desktop background at the moment). I will try again at a later date and see if it works. I just tried it again now, and nothing is showing up.

The variegated rosemary spoke of sounds beautiful! Rosemary and basil are probably my favorite herbs. Oh wait....then there's thyme, oregano, sage, parsley, cilantro (and the list goes on and on). I LOVE fresh herbs.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 12:56AM
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francescod(6b/7a VA)

There are lots of rosemary cultivars out there. Several of them are hardy to about 0ºF. The hardiest I grow, in order of hardiness-'Arp','Madeline Hill' (sometimes sold as Hill Hardy or Hardy Hill-introduced by my father), 'Nancy Howard' (White flowering variety), 'Dutch Mill', 'Salem', and 'Mrs. Jessops Upright'. In my area some people also have some success with 'Tuscan Blue'. In marginal areas, the plants can be wrapped in burlap or bubble wrap (keeping the top open to vent the heat) to increase hardiness. Most other rosemary is only hardy to about 15ºF at best.

Seed grown varieties are going to be less hardy than those I mentioned. Rosemary doesn't come true to type/variety reliably. If you want a hardy one you have to buy a plant from an herb nursery that knows its stuff. It is important to keep rosemary dry in the winter. Good drainage really helps rosemary hardiness.

There are two varieties of variegated rosemary I am aware of. One, called Golden Rain Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis 'Joyce DeBaggio'-introduced by my father in 1984) has gold edged leaves with a green streak down the center when in growth. The other one has a silver variegation. I had one that reverted to all green. Neither one is considered winter hardy.

There was a red flowered rosemary called 'Cricket Hill Red' or something like that. I never saw it but it is purportedly darker pink than other pink flowered rosemary. I hope you can post the picture soon.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 1:45AM
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herboholic

Still can't get the PhotoBucket link to work here on the forum for some reason. But you can see the picture here (along with some of my other photos):

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bodypure/2343392944/

Click on the top on "All Sizes" to see the full version. Still scaled down from the original, but larger than what you first see on the page.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 10:49AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

I was attempting to copy your image at the link provided, and then save it to Photobucket. It appears that because its on that photo sharing site, I only get a blank screen if I try to copy it to my system. If you have a photobucket account, use the HTML tag for pasting the photo bucket links, once you upload that rosemary photo directly from your PC. Some forums here don't allow photos, but I was able to get several up here with no problems.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 8:25PM
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herboholic

I do have a Photobucket account and the pic is uploaded there. I have pasted HTML tags before here on this forum with success, but for some reason, it's not working for me with this pic. Can't figure it out, I've tried and tried again, but nothing shows up. Which is why I posted the "flickr" image.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 8:42PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

I did notice it was in GIF format. I was just working with some high ended grapich software and savd in both JPG and GIG formats. GIF ha dactually crahsed al the programs I tried using the GIF file in, including MS Word! JPG files seem a bit less problematic.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 2:06AM
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herboholic

Thanks for all your input KSRogers. You've been really kind. However, the file I uploaded to Photobucket was a .jpg and not a .gif. I don't do .gif's.

The file's name is DSC05531-1000x750.jpg (the 1000x750 being the size I scaled it down to), so it's not a .gif. Perhaps it had to do with the way you were saving it? I tried saving it there just to be sure, and it saved as a .jpg, just the way it is.

A mystery.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 7:51AM
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joyceteo

Hello herboholic,

I saw your rosemary blossoms and I must say Stunning! I've never seen anything like it. U shld start propagating and selling me some when u have it ready. haha!

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 10:11AM
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herboholic

Thanks joyceteo! The picture did show a beautiful start of a bloom. Never seen the red before. Such a surprise. A nice one. Can't wait til the others start coming out and the plant is full of bloom. What a sight that will be. :-)

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 10:40AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

What I 'captured on the site you posted the photo to, identified it as a GIF. As I mentioned, that site might block or mess up the method used to save a picture thats been posted on a web page. Many times, if you point to a picture, and click the right button on the mouse, a SAVE window comes up with a filename already there. Your photo came up with the filename "spaceball.gif", and had nothing to do with what I would type in as a filename. I think its the web site that does that just to discourage people from grabbing photos, even though they are public.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 11:16AM
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poseyplanter(5A IL)

Hi herboholic!

What a lovely surprise. I did not know that rosemary could have red flowers.

I enjoyed looking through your uploaded photo collection. Did you bake all the delicious looking confections too? You must be quite the cook as well as camera buff.

Thank you for the peek through your viewfinder:)

Regards,
PoseyPlanter

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 7:21PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Ever notice the color sketch at the top left of this forum? Its none other than Rosemary, with white flowers. Being a sketch, it does show a litle red color in the blossoms, but nothing like yours. Rosemary has many strains. I wish I could find one that can survive a Z6 winter. Mine don't usually survive, so I grow from primed seeds every spring.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 9:57PM
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francescod(6b/7a VA)

Please take a picture that shows the actual bloom. Are there other buds like the one in the picture on the plant? Have you actually seen a red bloom?

ksrogers-the picture appears to be protected from being saved. Look at the source code and you'll find the url of just the picture. Just cut and paste into your browser and then you can save it.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 10:41PM
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elise1449

francescod,

How is your father? I had always wanted to take a road trip and visit his nursery back in the day when he was introducing all those wonderful rosemary varieties. Of course, there was always so much to do that we never made it out of Mississippi! I was really saddened to learn that he was leaving the rosemary business. I once had some of his varieties in my garden, but life intervened and I wasn't able to keep up with the gardening. Would love to gather some of them again.

Elise

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 3:09AM
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elise1449

Hello, herboholic,

I thought I had posted this earlier, but either I didn't or it has disappeared. If this truly turns out to be a red blossom, I would appreciate it if you would consider propagating a couple of plants for me. I have a few unusual and hard to find edibles I think you might like that I could swap for them.

Elise

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 3:26AM
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joyceteo

Hello herboholic,

Please propagate, I can imagine u having a line of people wanting to get their hands on this red blossom rosemary. U might even have to think of a name for it. Isn't that great?

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 5:38AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

What do you call this odd ball?? I know the outside two are buttercups, but what is that in the middle?? I do have seeds saved, and before the woodchuck destroyed all the new plants, I did get a few of the same egg shape squash. I also grow winter chives (wild onion), which die out in the heat of summer.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 2:12PM
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francescod(6b/7a VA)

ksrogers,
Try to find the hardy varieties I mentioned. Start with 'Arp' and 'Madeline Hill'. Richter's claims to have them. They are the hardiest of all the varieties out there. Remember to plant in a very well drained spot to increase hardiness in the winter. If the roots stay wet during the winter, the hardiness effectively decreases by one or two zones. You may have to protect them from the winter wind but they should survive for you, especially in a mild winter. Seed grown varieties will probably never be hardy for you.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 5:41PM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

I did buy some rosemary plants years ago, but every spring they are dead, with no life even after everything else is greening up. Because I am barely in Z6, its very hard to get the stuff to survive. If 30 year old rosebushes can die of extreme cold weather, there isn't much else I can do but to build a greenhouse over my whole back yard and heat it in winter. I figure about $250,000 would cover it, just for a few plants that are not very cold hardy. nah.. I don't mind starting anything from seeds, including my asparagus that come from my collected seeds every fall. I have a bunch of walking onions too, a Purple skin variety, that are quite hardy.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 7:28PM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

I too am barely zone 6 - rezoned from 5 to 6 in the last update to the hardiness map. I have tried rosemary ('arp' especially) many times and different locations with zero luck. Dead as a doornail come spring. I'm not the largest fan of rosemary so I've stopped trying to make it grow where it just can't make it.

To the original poster, the red blooms are interesting. Thanks for sharing the pictures!

FataMorgana

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 9:21AM
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CA Kate

herboholic: put me in line for some of those of those propagations. It would certainly make a conversation piece with the regular blue ones in my garden.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2008 at 5:50PM
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herboholic

Thanks for all the follow-ups. Daisy....would LOVE to see the variegated rosemary you spoke of....how beautiful that must be.

I'd also love to see a pic of the one with pink blossoms that was mentioned here. Must be so pretty.

Poseyplanter.....yes, I did bake all the confections on the link I pasted. I've been a baker too many years to count, but just within the last 3 years have been merging into the chef/cook field.

I'll look for a link on propagating this particular red blooming rosemary. Not sure how to do it, but I know it's explained somewhere here on the forums, so I don't want to take up space asking questions about it here.

Thanks everyone for sharing in my excitement over this beautiful plant.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2008 at 9:42AM
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CA Kate

The best way to start any Rosemary is to peg it to the ground.... pin a branch to the ground and it will root.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2008 at 10:31PM
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herboholic

westelle....easy enough. I will give it a try.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2008 at 12:40AM
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laura321(5)

I apologize for the late addition to this forum, but has anyone found a red blooming rosemary for sale- greenhouse, internet, etc.?
Herboholic-Has this particular plant flowered red again? Could it have crossed with something else? I'm very curious to know how it has done since the springÂ

Thanks,
Laura

    Bookmark   December 7, 2008 at 6:54PM
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cherokee34

Yes, if ever you want to trade, I would be VERY interested in cuttings of red rosemary. I'm looking for pink, too...I had a huge one, but it was almost like the plant tissue had some sort of time clock in it. The main plant, all the plants I got from its cuttings, and the rooted cuttings/plants I sent to Kentucky...ALL died at the same time! Every one of them! CROAK! I'm also looking for another white, and have a white that has blue veins. Rosemaries seem to start easy for me, and I have a bad habit of taking cuttings whenever I see one, which is why I have pots and pots of them, in varying shades of blue.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2009 at 10:19AM
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ksrogers(EasternMass Z6)

Could the red color be due to the soil pH? I do know that hydrangers would be pink flowers unless the soil was very acidic. Mine are nice and blue, because I add elemental sulfur to teh soil. Rosemary, seeds I start have only a single summer lifespan, and die over the winters.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2009 at 1:52AM
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