Tough Love

The rosemary has been struggling for a few months. One side of it is basically dead and won’t produce new growth. A few weeks ago, it started putting out it’s spring green, but primarily only on the “good” side.

You can tell from the above photos that it was looking a bit lethargic. I decided it needed a good prune. Knowing next to nothing about the growth habits of rosemary, and therefore, how to prune it, I had to hit the books. What I learned what that most varieties of rosemary produce new growth at the tips of branches.

So I decided to prune it down aggressively and hope for some fresh, bushy growth along the side branches. Hopefully I didn’t over do it –

First, I cut the central leader (main vertical branch) down about three inches, to encourage horizontal growth from it. Then I took off a lot of dead side branches almost down to the main branch. And finally, I used my fingers to “brush” through the entire plant and remove any spent needles.

I cleaned up the debris from the soil and gave it a good watering. When I replaced the pot into the window, I made sure to put the bad, heavily pruned side facing the window. I’m hoping the sun can work it’s magic on encouraging the bad side to sprout some new green.

Overall, I think it looks a lot healthier than it did before, so that’s good. But only time will tell what effect my pruning job will have – hopefully I didn’t take too much off, or take the wrong things off. If so… I guess I can take cuttings of what remains and start a couple new plants as replacements.