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(rosemary), a genus of plants of the family La-biatae. The plants are evergreen shrubs with erect ascending or, less frequently, prostrate branches. The leathery, linear leaves are subsessile and have curled margins and white tomentose undersides. The flowers have a bluish or, less commonly, pink or white bilabiate corolla measuring 10–12 mm long; they are gathered in axillary racemose inflorescences.
There are one to three similar species of rosemary, which are distributed in the Mediterranean region. The leaves and flowering shoots of the plant yield a volatile oil used in pefume and medicine. The flowers and leaves are used in cooking, for baths, and as an insecticide. Rosemary (R. officinalis) is grown in Europe for its aromatic oil and as an ornamental. In the USSR the plant is raised in the southern regions, mainly on the southern coast of the Crimea and in the Caucasus; in more northerly regions it is grown in pots and tubs.
Rosemary is propagated by cuttings and, less often, by seeds. Its greens are harvested the second or third year after planting. The average harvest of dry rosemary is 1–3 tons per hectare; the amount of essential oil obtained from the dry mass is 1.5–2.5 percent.
REFERENCEDerev’ia i kustarniki SSSR, vol. 5. Moscow-Leningrad, 1960.
V. N. GLADKOVA