Thursday, January 28, 2010

A desperate call for help

My friends, I'm afraid the end is near. You see, She is covered with bald spots, crunchy limbs, and (gasp!) even white mold. I just don't think She can hang on much longer. Unless you can help?

This is my rosemary topiary:

When I purchased her from a local nursery about 6 weeks ago, she was beautiful. A nicely manicured, conical shape, with soft, aromatic branches. Now, despite my best efforts, this has happened:

And this:

She's a finicky plant. I water sparsely and she isn't happy. I water often and she isn't happy. I guess being fickle is a woman's perogative, but I'd like to find some way to save her.... Do you have any suggestions?


Annie's Granny said...

Just a guess, but she might be root bound. I'd pull her out and put her in a larger pot with some nice, new potting mix. If her roots are all wound around, straighten or scarify (slice through) them so they don't choke her to death. You can start new ones from cuttings if you want.

Meredith said...

I was going to guess root-bound and probably not enough air circulation, especially at the bottom where the lip of the planter comes over the edge of the cone shape.

I'd do what Granny suggested and then trim away all the dead or diseased foliage, esp. anything with white mold, and then give it a gentle spray of seaweed foliar fertilizer at the time of transplanting and then about every two weeks. You can make a weak concentration for indoor plants, and I've also found that indoor rosemary likes to be misted with just plain room-temperature water, kind of like sea-spray, but no salt.

If all that caretaking fails, your husband can always take heart from the old wives' tale about rosemary only thriving in a home where the woman wears the pants. ;)

Erin said...

oh those topiaries are always bad news! They are treated to badly to shape them quickly and then neglected and not watered while they sit around at Christmas waiting for a buyer! I have had a few as gifts before, but the only one that lived is one I stuck in the ground immediately after receiving it, and I also pruned out some branches on the interior to let light and air in. good luck saving your baby!

Tina said...

I try to keep mine going from year to year - key word there is 'try'. lol.
The only thing that ever worked for me was some advice I got a few years ago - to try and mimic their native winter conditions which include very chilly, as much sun as you can give it and very moist. Not sopping wet, but always moist.
I've had pretty good luck with that so far, but I always start new from seed every winter - just in case. They grow reasonably fast.
Good luck!

Caffeinated Mom said...

Wow, guys - thanks for all the tips (and for making me NOT feel like a complete failure)! I'll run out tomorrow for a new pot and some soil.. Hopefully that will fix her up good. Thanks again!! :-)

Daphne said...

I wish I could help, but I killed my rosemary off in about three weeks after I brought it inside. I'm really good at killing them but not so good at keeping them alive.

Flowers said...

Beautiful.... the pictures and words were a joy to see and read... :O)