Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Death of Rosemary

She's been through a lot. She always bounced back, holding herself taller and stronger, and giving of herself, as only Rosemary could. Until this winter. She didn't handle the turn of the seasons so well. We thought she'd be happy in the girls' room, with the big sunny windows. I'm ashamed that I couldn't help her more, but alas, her time had come.

This past weekend we had to come to terms with the passing of a loyal and much-loved... rosemary plant.
Oh Rosemary...

If only we lived in Texas, we could plant her in our yard and watch her thrive. My Mum had a huge rosemary bush in her garden. The dogs would rub up against it and smell yummy. And the psychology building at UT Austin had a HEDGE of rosemary out front. You could rub your hand along it as you passed and smell its herby perfume. For you non-Texans reading, yes, Austin has hedges of rosemary. And rivers of beer. And spigots of chocolate fondue in every kitchen. You could even upgrade to Mexican chocolate, with its hint of cinnamon and cayenne - mmmm. Ok, so maybe not the beer and chocolate part. But Austin is pretty awesome, and any state that can grow giant hedges of my favorite herb is a land of fairy tales in my book.

I'm sad to admit that she died. She's been a loyal food-flavorer for quite some time now. So I cared for her remains this weekend. Dust-to-dust, ashes-to-ashes; she's in the compost bin now. Except for her leaves. They're in a large baggie in the pantry. She will continue to give, and continue to be appreciated by our family for quite some time.

Oh Rosemary, what has become of you?!

Oh, a lot of rosemary.

Oh, and have you ever heard someone say, "Oh, grow mint. It's impossible to kill!" Well, they're wrong. We killed our mint again. Another case of dust-to-compost bin. And a little baggie of leaves in the pantry.
Here's our mint.
We managed to kill it.

But the Boston Ivy? It must have sucked the CO2 away from the herbs, because it's growing like gangbusters. That's the plant I brought in on a whim, not really even caring if it survived. Go figure...

Survival of the fittest. Ivy gets the entire window to herself.


  1. Plant your mint outside (if you have a spot for it). It likes to have a winter kill. And you may want to plant it inside a bottomless plastic bucket, to contain the spread. At least that has been my family's experience. We had peppermint and catnip on a steep, unmowable incline at the back of the yard in WI and it came back every year and kept spreading.

    1. We're overhauling the yard this summer for a garden. I think I know exactly where to put some mint!

  2. Yes, there's something about the atmosphere indoors that rosemary plants don't seem to like; I've never been able to keep one going more than a couple months. I'm hoping global warming will let me keep one going outside if I situate it well. And ditto Denise re: Boston you'd probably want to contain it to a planter inside a larger non-draining container & be sure to keep it from seeding or you'll have it everywhere among the vinca!

    1. Poor Rosemary miraculously survived the last 2 winters. I guess we were just lucky.

  3. Oh yes, the drought and a brutal summer killed our rosemary and our mint. I hate having to buy rosemary!
    - Shannon

    1. I hate having to buy all herbs! We're putting in a garden this summer, and my hope is to put in lots of herbs to eat fresh and dry for the next year.