NAME: Romarinus officinalis

AKA: Rosemary

TYPE: Half-hardy perennial

FAMILY: Labiatae; relatives include salvia, mint, thyme, basil, lamb's ears

and coleus

VARIETY: Madalene Hill, aka Hill Hardy

VITAL STATS: 16- to 48-inch-tall upright plant; green, leathery

needle-shaped leaves with gray undersides; foliage has rich pinelike aroma;

pale blue-violet flowers; winter hardy to minus-10 degrees F., if mulched.

NATIVE LAND: Mediterranean coastline; this variety was introduced as Hill

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Hardy by Thomas DeBaggio of Arlington, Va., but has been re- named Madalene

Hill.

BLOSSOM TIME: Late winter/early spring

BEST FEATURES: Superb winter-hardiness for Long Island gardens; tolerant of

salt-mist; savory fragrance released by the lightest touch.

LIKES: Excellent air circulation and soil drainage; full sun to part shade;

a south-facing wall with protection from winter winds.

SWORN ENEMIES: Mildew-caused by lack of air movement; root rot -the result

of overwatering.

PLANT PARTNERS: Basil African Blue, lavender, gray curly chives and purple

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sage; red miniature roses; can be shaped into a lovely potted Christmas tree

topiary.

TLC: Prune dead portions in early spring. If desired, bring indoors for

winter and grow in sunny spot, but provide good air circulation. Check soil

dampness frequently-water lightly, but often.