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How to Propagate Rosemary Cuttings

You can propagate rosemary from cuttings very easily. For many people Rosemary is a tender perennial and must be taken inside during the cold winter months. You can overwinter it in a greenhouse or a very sunny window of your home.

Propagate Rosemary from cuttings.

This fine rosemary plant has been pruned into the shape of a topiary. The video at the end of this post shows how I do that.

Today we are going to prune it more to refresh its shape then we will root the trimmings.

Rosemary plant ready to be pruned

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Soil Mix for Rosemary cuttings

Mix up some compost, rice hulls (you can also use perlite) and horticultural sand to create a well draining potting mix. Want to just buy some in a bag? Buy cactus potting mix.

I prefer making my own see link below for my basic potting mix.

Related: DIY potting soil

soil ready for rosemary cuttings

Take cuttings from Rosemary

You will note this is a different Rosemary than above and it is a different variety. The method is the same.

With snippers or sharp pruners take fresh green cuttings about 3 or 4 inches long.

taking cuttings with pruners from a rosemary plant

Remove leaves from Rosemary Cutting

With your fingers pull the leaves off the lower portion of the rosemary cutting. They come off easily.

Dip cutting into rooting hormone (optional), this is the one I used.

lower leaves stripped from rosemary cutting

Create divot for Rosemary cutting

Using a dauber of so sort create a divot or hole in the soil to put your cutting down into.

The tender stems bend easily and this helps as well as it prevents the rooting hormone powder from rubbing off.

using a sharpie pen to create divot in soil for Rosemary cutting

Take lots of Cuttings

Take a lot of cuttings to root. This insures success and you can always give away Rosemary plants if all of them strike (aka: root)

four inch pot filled with Rosemary cuttings

You can place a lot in one pot, as I show above. Or…..

You can reuse a clean, sterile six pack container like this for individual cuttings.

empty plastic six pack container for plants
this one still needs to be scrubbed

Or you can get the soil blockers and create individual little planting cubes. I am getting one of these this year and can’t wait to try it.

In the photo below the pot on the right has the cuttings from the topiary and the one of the left is deeper green rosemary I just picked up at a garden center.

I love the difference in foliage.

pots with rosemary cuttings freshly stuck

If you take cuttings in Spring (warmer weather) you won’t need to use heat mats or lights for the cuttings to root. I am doing this in December and it is too cold even in my greenhouse for cuttings to take.

They are on my seed starting rack in my office.

You can start cuttings in water on a windowsill as well though I have yet to try that. Today I will take some more cuttings and give it a whirl and report back on how it goes!

The video below not only shows how I make topiary from Rosemary cuttings but how I take and root them.

More plants from cuttings I have written about:

I wish you happy gardening!

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