The rosemary is quite frugal and does not need a lot of nutrients. We show you how to fertilize your rosemary in a gentle way.
Rosemary ( Rosmarinus officinalis ) is a popular culinary herb and is suitable both as a pot plant and for growing in the garden. Pamper your rosemary with as much sun and warmth as possible and you can be sure of a rich harvest. In addition to sufficient light and warmth, the supply of nutrients naturally also plays a role in a good yield. Rosemary is one of the low-eating plants and requires only small amounts of nutrients.
If the rosemary only needs a few nutrients, the question naturally arises as to whether the Mediterranean spice needs fertilization at all. In the following, we will tell you why and when you should fertilize your rosemary and which fertilizer is best for it.
Does rosemary need fertilizer?
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If the rosemary is in a suitable location with as much sun and warmth as possible and the right bedding neighbors – for example, sage ( Salvia ) – it grows almost by itself and requires little care. Rosemary is also undemanding and easy to care for in the pot. Does the aromatic plant need fertilizer at all in order to be able to grow well?
The answer is yes because the herb cannot do without fertilizer. Rosemary is a perennial plant and can grow in the garden or in pots for many years. So it gradually uses up all the nutrients in the substrate or in the garden soil – and you can remedy this with the right fertilization.
When is the best time to fertilize rosemary?
If you don’t have your own garden or live in areas with too cold a winter, it is best to grow your rosemary in a pot. Those who are blessed with mild winters can also grow rosemary outdoors all year round. When planting, you should make sure that the soil is enriched with sufficient nutrients. In a location with poor soil, you can enrich the soil with compost, rotted manure, or a fertilizer with organic long-term effects such as our organic universal fertilizer before planting. In this way, you create optimal growth conditions for the herb from the outset.
Herbs that have just been bought in pots from the supermarket or hardware store are happy to have enough nutrients in the soil or substrate after moving them to the garden or transplanting them into a larger pot. When planting, you can therefore work some fertilizer into the soil. It is best to use a fertilizer with organic long-term effects such as our organic universal fertilizer. This not only has a positive and gentle effect on your rosemary, but also on the soil and the animals in your garden. The granulate dissolves when water is added during watering and is then broken down by hard-working microorganisms in the soil. These then make the nutrients available to the plants and release them slowly and gently to the plant. In this way, you offer your rosemary ideal starting conditions in the spring after planting. You can re-fertilize regularly during the growth phase (May to September). But this is not absolutely necessary. The last application of fertilizer then takes place at the beginning of August. In the autumn and winter months, you no longer fertilize the rosemary.
When is the best time to fertilize rosemary?
- Basic fertilization in spring
- Fertilize in small amounts during the growth phase
- Stop applying fertilizers in winter
Fertilize the rosemary in the bed
From the end of May, you can plant the warmth-loving rosemary in the garden bed. Put some fertilizer in granulate forms, such as our organic universal fertilizer, into the planting hole, and do not forget to water it sufficiently. Because the fertilizer with its organic long-term effect releases its nutrients slowly and gently to the plant, you do not need to fertilize your rosemary again in the first year after planting. In the second year after planting, the plant is happy to receive small fertilizers at regular intervals. The first application of fertilizer can be made in spring, the next two months later. It is important to fertilize only in small amounts so that there is no over-fertilization. Finally, at the beginning of August, the last fertilizer should be applied.
When and how is best to fertilize rosemary in the bed?
- When planting out, provide organic fertilizer with long-term organic effects
- Pour well so that the granules can dissolve
- Do not fertilize in the first year after planting
- From the second year onwards, re-fertilize about every two months
- Last application of fertilizer in August
Fertilize the rosemary in the pot
If you are not already using a pre-fertilized substrate, you can simply work a long-term fertilizer in granulate form – for example, our organic universal fertilizer – into the substrate when you put your rosemary in a pot. After planting, water the plant well. This has two positive effects: the plant receives enough moisture and the granules slowly dissolve. The organic material is broken down by the hard work of small microorganisms and the nutrients it contains are slowly but surely made available to the plant.
In the first year after planting in the pot, the rosemary does not need any more fertilization, as the long-term effect of the fertilizer lasts for a long time. In the next year, you can start fertilizing again from spring. To do this, add an organic fertilizer in very small quantities to the rosemary every six to eight weeks. Alternatively, you can use a mineral liquid fertilizer every three to four weeks. The same applies to the plant in the pot: no more fertilizers in winter. From the end of August, you can stop fertilizing and start again next spring, from mid-March.
When and how is best to fertilize rosemary in a pot?
- Work in some slow-release fertilizer when planting
- Keep the substrate moist so that the granules can loosen
- Do not fertilize in the first year after planting
- In the following years fertilize every 6 – 8 weeks with fertilizer with an organic long-term effect
- Alternatively, re-fertilize every 3 – 4 weeks with mineral liquid fertilizer
- Do not fertilize in winter anymore
Rosemary: with what and how much fertilizer?
Every amateur gardener should decide for himself which fertilizer is the right one. After all, there are many different ways that you can add nutrients to your rosemary. To help you make a decision, we give you an overview of which fertilizers are suitable for the nutrient supply of rosemary and how you can best proceed with fertilization.
Mainly fertilize rosemary organically
Although the rosemary needs fertilizers from time to time, too much fertilizer does more harm than help. Therefore, balanced fertilization with rosemary is particularly important. Fertilizers with an organic long-term effect are particularly advantageous here, as the granules can be dosed well and the risk of over-fertilization is minimized. In addition to this great advantage, fertilizers with organic long-term effects have many other advantages.
If the rosemary was supplied with organic slow-release fertilizer, it does not need any further fertilization in the first year after planting in the pot
What are the advantages of fertilizers with an organic long-term effect?
- Long-term nutrient supply for your rosemary through slow decomposition of the fertilizer via microorganisms from the soil
- Promotion of soil life and sustainable improvement of the soil structure
- Particularly gentle on people, animals, and the environment by doing without chemical-synthetic production processes
Our organic universal fertilizer with organic long-term effects fully meets these criteria. It consists mainly of organic, plant-based raw materials. Most of these come from residues from the food, luxury, and animal feed industries and are therefore particularly resource-saving and sustainable. The composition of the fertilizer is also ideal for your rosemary: the high nitrogen content has a positive effect on the growth of the plant. Phosphorus and potassium in turn ensure good root formation and resistance of the aromatic herb. So that you provide your rosemary with the right amount of nutrients, we have prepared detailed fertilization instructions for you below.
What is the best way to fertilize rosemary?
- Before planting: Work 15 – 35 g / m² (1 to 3 tablespoons) of our organic universal fertilizer into the topsoil layers or mix about 1 g / l (a quarter of a teaspoon) into the substrate in a pot culture
- After setting, water the soil well so that the granules can loosen
- In the next year, you should fertilize again 10 – 30 g / m² (1 to 2 heaping tablespoons) or about 1 g / l for a pot culture
- Repeat this application of fertilizer in the garden bed after 2 months, in the pot after 6 – 8 weeks
Fertilize rosemary minerally
Mineral fertilizers offer the advantage that the nutrients are in pure form and can thus be absorbed directly by the plant. However, due to the high concentration of nutrients in mineral fertilizers, there is an increased risk of over-fertilization. Too many nutrients are harmful to the plant, especially in the case of rosemary, which is a low eater. Too much fertilizer cannot be absorbed by the plant at all – it is then flushed out and thus ensures the eutrophication of waters. In addition, mineral fertilizers are produced in a chemically synthetic way – at the expense of nature and the environment.
Fertilizers with organic long-term effects, on the other hand, are natural and release the nutrients gently and slowly to the plant. Since the nutrients first have to be released by microorganisms, the risk of leaching is much lower. This is much gentler on plants, animals, and people.
Fertilize rosemary with home remedies: coffee grounds
If you want to fertilize your rosemary naturally with home remedies, you are kind to nature and your wallet. However, not all home remedies are good for rosemary. It is better not to fertilize with coffee grounds, for example, as the Mediterranean herb prefers alkaline soils. However, the coffee grounds lower the pH value of the soil and make it too acidic for rosemary. Small doses of compost or well-rotted manure are more suitable.
In addition to fertilizing, the correct watering, cutting, and wintering for rosemary are of course also important. In our special article, you will learn everything about the correct care of rosemary.