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Pruning very old and woody Rosemary?

Hi all my son in Devon, estuary and south Isa facing front garden, has inherited a very woody Rosemary that needs a trim/ severe haircut. Is now an ok time to do this so that new foliage can grow for winter coverage or should we wait? Any advice gratefully received. PottyL


  • Ignore Isa! Not sure where that came from. 
  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    I've never been successful trying to prune an old rosemary. I do find them here not to be very long lived plants. My advice would be to hoick it out and buy another in the autumn. 
    Or take some cuttings now and root them if you do want to try and prune it. Just in case!
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • madpenguinmadpenguin Posts: 2,498
    I would also go the 'hoick it out and replace' route!!
    “Every day is ordinary, until it isn't.” - Bernard Cornwell-Death of Kings
  • BijdezeeBijdezee Posts: 1,484
    edited July 2018
    Take cuttings, they root easily and grow quickly and they are free!

    I just left mine in water on the windowsill and they grew roots then i potted them up. 
  • Ah ok, that is not what I expected but thank you. I will take cuttings and go from there. I though maybe I could save it? 
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,314
    You could probably keep it alive, but it wont recover and look good again.
    For all practical purposes I've found they're short-lived shrubs. I typically keep mine for 3-4 years and take cuttings to replace them when they get old and woody.
    Cuttings I took last spring are now good healthy plants
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • BijdezeeBijdezee Posts: 1,484
    Same here pete, every other year i raise new ones to replace and straggly or damaged plants. 
  • Ok guys you win! Cuttings will be taken and hoicted our next time I’m visiting! 
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