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How to Propagate Rosemary Cuttings in Water

Despite not being a green thumb I have successfully learned to propagate rosemary cuttings in water! I typically kill plants, however, over the years I have successfully grown rosemary despite myself.

Turns out rosemary is one of the best starter plants to learn the art of gardening. It is an independent plant that needs little from people. I don’t even water it! I became so bold in my rosemary abilities, that this spring I learned how to make more rosemary all on my own.

In this post we will go over step-by-step instructions about how propagate rosemary, but also rosemary pregnancy/postpartum information!

On This Page

4 minute read
Gardening During Pregnancy
Rosemary During Pregnancy
Rosemary During Postpartum
Uses for Rosemary at Home
Instructions on How to Propagate Rosemary

Gardening During Pregnancy

Gardening during pregnancy has many benefits. Fresh air, easy exercise, sunlight and connecting with nature and new life are important activities for a pregnant woman. Not only is it a great activity, you’ll reap the benefits in your home. Rosemary is one of those plants that will give you a quick win. Try it and see!

Rosemary During Pregnancy

*Rosemary Essential Oil is not safe during pregnancy but the herb, used in moderation, it is perfectly safe. If you are in your first trimester, having a threatened miscarriage or are experiencing pre-term labor symptoms, err on the side of caution and limit the culinary use of rosemary. (If you’re looking for a tea drink this pregnancy tea instead.)

Rosemary During Postpartum

Rosemary is an antiseptic, promotes healing, and would be a wonderful and fragrant addition to a postpartum herbal sitz bath or even to help heal an umbilical cord stump.

Uses for Rosemary at Home

Rosemary is a prolific herb that can be used for a variety of things. Here are some ways I use rosemary around my home.

  • The main thing I use my rosemary for is to bake a whole chicken. It’s delicious. (That link <== right there? Best. Chicken. Recipe. Ever.)
  • When I make bone broth, I use rosemary as well. It smells delicious when its cooking!
  • I also take cuttings and hang them upside down throughout my house. It smells great, and keeps bugs away.
  • Another idea is to place a sprig of rosemary in a bottle of olive oil to make rosemary infused oil. It’s so delicious! (Be sure to not let the rosemary bob above the oil or that piece will turn moldy. Gross.)
  • I think rosemary is so awesome that it should replace most ornamental shrubs. Why have plants that only look pretty? They should be functional as well.
bone broth in a pressure cooker with rosemary

Instructions on How to Propagate Rosemary

Once you have an established rosemary plant, a really neat thing you can do with it is take a cutting and make more rosemary plants. It’s super simple to learn how to propagate rosemary from cuttings. If I can do it, you can too!

I live in North Florida and learned how to propagate rosemary in March and April. The weather is in the 50s at night in the 70s during the day. This whole process only took about a month.

Step 1

Cut a piece of rosemary about 6-8 inches long that looks like it is newer growth. Brown, stick like stalks won’t do. Look for green and purple stalks.

cutting of rosemary from a large rosemary bush

Here are beautiful, fresh, new rosemary stalks that are purple.

three cuttings of new rosemary growth with purple stalk and green leaves

Step 2

With your fingernails, strip away the outside of the lower half of the stalk.

fresh and new rosemary with stalk stripped to prepare for propagating in water

Step 3

  • Place stripped stalks in water.
  • Put in a mason jar on a windowsill in a common area like a kitchen sink.
  • Make sure the water level is low enough that the rosemary leaves won’t be sitting in the water.
three stalks of rosemary propagating in a mason jar of water

Step 4

  • Grow roots and be patient.
  • Replace the water every few days.
  • Occasionally rise the stalks in running water when it seems like weird things are starting to grow on the stalks.
new roots emerging from the side of a stalk of rosemary that's been sitting in a cup of water

The photo below was taken about a week and a half after the one above. The whole process took around one month.

more root growth from rosemary stalks that have propagated in water for a month

Isn’t it amazing to see where the roots emerged? For some reason I had it in my head that the roots would come from the bottom of the stalk, but they didn’t. They came from the sides!

Step 5

  • Plant rosemary in healthy, well drained soil.
  • Keep an eye on it for that first month and water it when necessary. Rosemary doesn’t like a lot of water, so it’s not necessary to keep the soil damp at all times.
  • Once the roots have secured themselves, you can let the plant be more independent.

I plan on giving these growing cuttings to some friends, which is a sweet gift idea!

Have you tried it?

Have you tried this method of propagating rosemary in a cup of water? Leave a comment and let me know about your experience!


Tuesday 27th of February 2024

Thanks! I believe I have killed more plants than you. The last rosemary which came with our house 20+ years ago died, and I missed it a lot. Your instruction is so clear.


Wednesday 21st of December 2022

I have an Aerogarden and rooted a couple of sprigs of rosemary. My sprigs are over eight inches wide and six inches tall. Did I wait to long to pot them?


Sunday 23rd of October 2022

I made rosemary tea- i cut up a few leaves and added it to black leaf tea. I have never had this amount of energy and alertness after coffee. I have to recommend it to everyone :P


Wednesday 21st of February 2024

@Carmen, sounds good! I will try this. I have made my own herbal tea this year with a mix of herbs but I haven’t tried any rosemary yet— even though I have a huge plant, indoors until warm weather.

Lynn Gurganious

Thursday 21st of October 2021

Can you have a rosemary plant growing indoors? If so, what kind of light does it like? Thank you! Lynn


Friday 30th of July 2021

Do the roots appear in the portion where the stem is submerged or where it is just above the water?

Lindsey VanAlstyne

Friday 30th of July 2021

Hmmm... I can't remember. Have you tried it yet?