How Long do Rosemary Plants Live? (Lifespan + Tips to Live Longer)

This post may contain affiliate links

Rosemary is among the most sought-after plants to cultivate in your own home. Its wonderful scent and taste are two of the main reasons that so many people love it, but it is also because it’s an easy plant to cultivate and maintain for a long period. One of the things I love about rosemary plants is that they can stay in good health for years. What exactly is the life expectancy of the rosemary plant?

How long do rosemary plants live? The life span of rosemary is usually between 10 to 20 years. The length of time that rosemary can live is contingent on the climate it’s in, and the better the conditions, the longer the rosemary plant will survive and the more vigorous and larger it will get.

As rosemary is one of my favorite plants, I’ve been doing plenty of research to find out as much as possible about the length of time the plant can last and the best way to take care of it to ensure it lives to the maximum extent possible.

Continue reading to find out the length of time you can count on the rosemary plant to last and how you can prolong its lifespan.

How Long do Rosemary Plants LivePin

Rosemary Plants: Lifespan & Contributing Factors

All plant lovers worldwide love rosemary due to its long-lasting life span.

If you’re trying to sustain your business for five or ten years, or even longer, It’s time to find out about the aspects that influence its longevity.

Rosemary Lifespan Under Ideal Conditions

Since it is an evergreen shrub, The rosemary plant can last for a long time in the best conditions. The lifespan of rosemary is about ten years, although certain plants can last for up to 20 years!

These include:

  • Warm climates.
  • It is best to water your plants only once a week (watering rosemary once every two weeks is ideal).
  • A lot of direct sunlight (at minimum 6-8 hours).
  • Loamy is well-drained soil free of plants, weeds, or rocks. The remains of plants.
  • Winter protection.
  • The need to trim from time to time.

Life Expectancy for Potted Rosemary Plants

Potted rosemary will last for a long time. But, to keep your plant healthy, you must evaluate the size of your plant and its roots each spring.

Repotting rosemary in fresh soil each spring can extend the duration of its life expectancy.

You might also like: Best Hanging Plants For Kitchen

How Long do Rosemary Plants LivePin

Common Rosemary Plant Problems That Cause Early Death

The robust leaves and tough nature of rosemary can lead people to believe that rosemary is invincible to disease and illness.

If you notice that your plant is turning brown or looking spindly and losing its scent is the right time to apply some troubleshooting methods.

Because the plant is indigenous to the Mediterranean, Imitating this climate can help protect against its premature death.

Let’s examine the most frequent issues that your rosemary might face, as well as ways to tackle these issues.

Watering Issues

Rosemary can be sensitive to excessive watering. The result is that the foliage is droopy and then turns yellow and brown.

The rosemary plant requires well-drained soil. If the soil drains slowly, the water could drown the plant’s roots, which can cause discoloration in the leaves.


If your rosemary appears to be overwatering, it’s time to reduce the watering amount.

Many new gardeners are unaware that these plants thrive when subjected to a small amount of neglect. A few drops of water every week is enough.

Insufficient Sunlight

Insufficient sunshine is a typical cause of dying and weak rosemary. Rosemary plants require at least 6-8 hours of sun each day.


If you have to relocate your rosemary from its typical sun-filled spot, avoid mild starvation by slowly moving rosemary to shaded areas.

This causes the plant to improve its efficiency in changing light into energy.

If your rosemary is growing in your home, create a perfect lighting environment by putting the bulb with a fluorescent bulb next to the plant or placing it on a bright windowsill.


Common pests attacking rosemary’s weak points include spider mites, aphids, mealybugs, and scale.

Aphids and Spider Mites

Spider mites and aphids take the sap from the plant’s leaves, leading it to die and then die.

Aphids create an adhesive substance on leaves, referred to as honeydew spider mite is usually ignored because it is so small.


Mix a mixture of essential oils, such as clove, peppermint, and rosemary oil. Spray regularly on the plant to rid the plant of spider mites and aphids.


Similar to mealybugs, mealybugs eat the sap of the rosemary plant. They leave behind an oily substance that attracts other insects.


If you see mealybugs in your rosemary, spray them with water or neem oil (I use this Premium organic neem for my food items) or soap-based insecticide.

See also  Are Water Lilies Poisonous? (Definitive Answer)


Scales are brown and bumpy insects that stick to the plants they are taking in the sap of the plant.


Remove and dispose of those tips that have been infested with rosemary. If the number of spores is low, it is possible to remove scales manually or apply the pests using an alcohol-soaked cotton swab.

You might also like: How to Grow Garlic in Water

How Long do Rosemary Plants LivePin

Improper Fertilization

If you fertilize your plants incorrectly, it can harm them, so be sure to read the fertilizer’s directions attentively.

Applying fertilizer directly onto the plant could result in the burning of the leaves, and using too much nitrogen-rich fertilizer can attract insects sucking plant sap, which is also an issue.


Fertilizing the soil in your potting area instead of the leaves will prevent the burning of the leaves.

Rosemary rarely requires fertilizer. However, if your plant’s a slow growth rate, you can apply an all-purpose fertilizer in the spring before the new growth emerges.


Rosemary is resistant to most illnesses but can become a victim of powdery mildew and root rot.

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is a widespread disease that can spread to leaves, leaving white thatch all over the plant.

The disease is most likely to occur if the plant is located in semi-shaded areas or the soil around your plant is always damp.


Create more airflow around your plant, or apply a fungicide such as this one, which is suitable by the USDA for organic gardens.

To make your fungicide, mix one teaspoon of baking soda and 2 liters of water in lukewarm form. Spray this solution on the leaves of the plant.

Root Rot

Root rot is a fungal illness that develops when there is excessive water. Root rot is prevalent during the winter when there is a lot of rainfall and less evaporation.


It is imperative to stop watering and get rid of the moisture-retentive material. If the brown leaves are extensive, look at the plant’s roots by lifting it up from the soil (or the pot).

Cut off the slimy and dark roots Remove the roots that are slimy and dark, and dust them with powder for fungicide before planting them back in new soil.

Cold Temperatures

The harsh winter winds and the frigid temperatures can influence rosemary. The leaves will appear spindly, smaller, and less bushy under these conditions.

The plant can withstand mild frosts for short durations However, temperatures of between 15 and 20 degrees (-6 to 9degC) will kill rosemary.


Covering the plant will help your rosemary endure the cold winter. It is best to keep the plant in a pot, and moving it inside for winter could help your plant to survive.

Too Much Humidity

Rosemary plants don’t react well to extreme humidity as they thrive in dry conditions.

A high humidity won’t just increase pest populations The plant can also turn brown, die, and eventually die.


To keep insects and root rot from happening, keep the rosemary plant in a shaded area with plenty of sunshine. Choose a sunny, well-drained area.

It’s recommended to have a fan running over the plants a few hours each day, safeguarding them from insects.

Lack of Pruning

Lack of pruning results in the accumulation of dead wood.

Additionally, the longer your plant grows, the bushier and woodier it will become, which could restrict the sprig’s access to adequate sunlight and air circulation and result in an unhealthy, overgrown plant.


Remove dead or decaying wood from the plants by cutting it once per season, most preferably in early spring or even in the middle of fall.

A slight trimming can help increase the airflow to the sprigs and their capacity to get sunlight.

Too Much Pruning

It is not necessary to cut these perennial plants overly. Trimming them whenever you observe that they’re overgrown and woody is recommended.

Too much trimming can result in the plant collapsing, and it won’t be possible to revive it. The plant will eventually end up dying.


It is recommended to trim rosemary in order to reduce its size, and to allow it to increase its productivity for the next year.

You should harvest not more than 1/4 the plant in the flowering season.

How to Make Your Rosemary Live for as Long as Possible

The lifespan of rosemary plants is around ten years on average. However, they can live up to 20 years if under the right conditions.

Making sure your rosemary is in the best conditions is the most crucial factor you can do to prolong its life. However, it can also play an essential factor in the speed at which and big the plant can grow. With this being said, I’ll discuss exactly the conditions the rosemary thrives under right now.

The best conditions for the rosemary plant to flourish and remain healthy for a long period, and to expand:

Direct sunlight 6-8 hours per day Temperature 68-86 F (20-30 C) Watering A pot In the ground Every two weeks, at the most Fertilizer Every 2 months or less, but never Soil A little alkaline (7-8 pH)

I suggest you go through this article, in which I get more in-depth about each of these advancing circumstances.

The most important thing for keeping rosemary healthy and happy and flourishing for a long period is knowing when and when to cut the plant. It’s pretty simple. I’ll explain precisely the procedure in this article.

Depending on what you’d like to get out of your plant, you might want to take the flowers off when the plant is in bloom.

As was mentioned earlier in this blog post, rosemary is resilient in harsh conditions and even stands up to frosts in winter months in the majority of the world.

See also  Terrarium Substrate Layers (Ultimate guide)

I’m in a region in which winters are quite unpredictable. There are times when temperatures barely dip below freezing, but at other times, it can be as low as 65 degrees F (about 18deg Celsius) or even colder, depending on where I reside.

If you’re like me and reside in a region where winters can be cold, I’ve got an easy tip that you could use to get your rosemary plants to get through the dark winter night.

Covering the rosemary plant in the evening or during stormy weather in winter to lessen the chance of injury from frost is beneficial. On days of cool but mild conditions, the plant shouldn’t be covered since it will need to absorb sunlight wherever it is.

Plant covers are simple to use and are available inexpensively at most nursery or garden centers, but you can also locate covers on Amazon. Here’s an illustration.

Avoid These Common Mistakes That Can Kill Rosemary

The right growing conditions are essential to keep it healthy for a long period, but there’s something else to consider.

A lot of people like me sometimes experience issues with their plants of rosemary. These require attention to ensure that the plant is healthy.

I’ll cover the most frequently occurring issues that cause the death of rosemary plants to let you know exactly what to look out for and what to do if it occurs.

Overwatering rosemary

Overwatering is among the most frequent mistakes people make when growing rosemary.

Luckily for you, I’ve made this error several times in the past and, naturally, been trying to figure out how to deal with it if you do overwater rosemary.

Fortunately, salvaging an overwatered rosemary plant is not that complicated, so there’s no need to fret. If you spot it early, it is almost impossible to save the rosemary plant after you have overwatered it.

The best way to save overwatered rosemary is to take out dead, brown leaves and branches, then ensure that the plant is in well-drained soil. Maintaining a consistent watering time frame is recommended since it thrives optimally in moist but not wet or dry soils.

Suppose you allow your rosemary to soak up excess water over long periods. In that case, the roots are likely to develop a rotting process which can eventually kill them if they do not do something to stop it. For your convenience, I’ve written this blog which explains exactly how you can keep rosemary that has been overwatered.

Underwatering rosemary

As previously mentioned, it is best to plant rosemary in moist soil, and when the soil is too moist, the root begins to rot, which causes the plant to die.

It is, at a minimum, as fatal as overwatering it because it grows in dry soil it isn’t in a position to absorb nutrients or water and will die possibly even more quickly than excessive watering.

To keep rosemary from getting submerged, ensure that you keep it watered regularly every 1-2 weeks. Smaller, young plants require regular watering, more frequently than larger established plants, but in smaller quantities.

Overfertilizing rosemary

In contrast to other plants and herbs in the garden, it is not a fan of lots of fertilizer.

Of course, it is important to never over-fertilize your plants in the garden, but rosemary is particularly delicate when it comes to fertilization.

In the case of fertilization, rosemary thrives on inattention and should be fertilized only every month or often. Luckily, it is fairly easy to determine when the rosemary has been exposed to excessive fertilizer. Here’s how to tell:

If rosemary is receiving too many fertilizers, The leaves may start to turn yellow. If you observe this occurring, avoid using fertilizers on the rosemary plants for a minimum of 1 month to observe whether the leaves begin to change color.

Share the image below to your Pinterest board if you find this article on Rosemary helpful!

How Long do Rosemary Plants LivePin


Is Rosemary a Perennial?

Yes, we can classify rosemary as a perennial plant since it has a life span of 3 or 4 years however, it is also described as an annual flower, based on the climate where it is growing.

Why Is My Rosemary Turning Yellow?

The appearance of rosemary that is yellow could be an indication that there is a lack of sunshine and a deficiency in nutrients. If the leaves of your plant have turned yellow, it’s a sign that your plant is deficient in iron.

When your oldest leaf changes color, your plant might be deficient in zinc, nitrogen manganese, or zinc.

Why Is My Rosemary Turning Black?

Overwatering rosemary is the principal reason for tips turning black. Overwatering can cause dark leaves with spots. The rosemary should be watered at the base to ensure the water drains efficiently.


Rosemary is an independent plant that will faithfully provide for you over a long time. Unsuitable care and unjust conditions can result in the premature death of this plant.

Reviewing the basics of caring for your rosemary before you purchase a rosemary plant is the best method to ensure that your rosemary plant will last throughout the years that are to take.

Leave a Comment

Share to...