New National Collection of Rosmarinus officinalis cultivars

Plant Heritage is delighted to welcome a new Collection of Rosmarinus officinalis to its scheme. 
 
When Steve and Angie Hipkin took over their nursery near New Quay, West Wales they inherited 20 Rosmarinus cultivars. In 2005, they met Madeline Sadler, an established National Collection holder, who inspired them to start collecting in earnest. Since then, the couple have added to the collection, which now has a staggering 84 cultivars. 
 
Steve is not stopping there. He says, “I’d really like to find the double-flowered forms mentioned in old herbals and include some of the continental varieties in the Collection.”
 
To promote the Collection, Steve has built a web-site at www.rosemaries.co.uk. Visitors to the web site will be able to buy rosemaries propagated from the Collection and learn more about this fascinating herb.
 
Mercy Morris, Conservation Officer for Plant Heritage, said, “It is very good news to see this new Rosmarinus National Collection.This represents a success in terms of conserving Rosmarinus,from one Collection to another, which secures their future in the longer term.”
 
Rosemary is a native plant of the Mediterranean where it grows as a component of the famous garrigue landscape of Provence. It is one of the oldest known culinary and medicinal herbs. In addition to the many folk and traditional uses of rosemary, modern scientists have found that extracts of Rosmarinus officinalis have anti-depressant, anti-microbial and anti-oxidant properties.
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