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Rosemary Topiaries

Fresh, Fragrant & Festive

10 Ways to Use Rosemary

Rosemary is a must-have for every home and garden! This perennial herb boasts lovely fragrant, needle-like leaves of silvery green and is native to the Mediterranean region and is a member of the mint family. This hardy evergreen is easy to grow and is not just beautiful, it's very useful as well. Among its many uses, it's prized in the culinary world for its flavorful leaves. It also has a lovely fragrance and pretty, petite blue flowers in spring. While there are too many creative ways to use rosemary to list here, we've picked some of our favorites to share with you.

  1. Holiday Decorating - Placed in an entryway, their fresh, crisp fragrance welcomes guests and beckons them inside. Arrange around the buffet, on side servers, or as table centerpieces. With their festive wraps, these tabletop trees and cones add splashes of color and shimmering accents throughout the holiday season. Or, simply place them in a decorative container and add a bow. And don’t forget to tuck a handful of fresh sprigs beneath the ribbon just before delivering packages!
  2. Cooking - Use fresh or dried rosemary leaves to give a slightly spicy and woodsy flavor to dishes. Rosemary is particularly tasty with poultry, meats, fish, potatoes, soups and stews and vegetables.
  3. Landscape - Rosemary is a great landscape shrub! Not only is it a beauty, it's drought tolerant, deer resistant and super low maintenance. Upright varieties will add evergreen structure to the garden, and groundcover type varieties are great for trouble spots like slopes.
  4. Beverages - Add fresh rosemary to water, hot tea, lemonade, or cocktails.
  5. Fragrance - Rosemary is known for for its wonderful aroma. Add it to a simmer pot to make your home smell fresh and fragrant.
  6. BBQ Skewers - Remove the leaves and use the woody stems as a skewer to infuse flavor into whatever it is you are grilling. And, don't throw away the leaves - sprinkle those on top for added flavor.
  7. Basting Brush - We love this idea! Infuse a little extra flavor into meat by creating a basting brush using rosemary sprigs. Cut 6 - 8 stems of woody branches of rosemary at least 10 inches long. Remove a third of the leaves at the bottom of the branch. Tie them with cooking twine and use them to brush on marinades.
  8. Infused Olive Oil - Snip 4 or 5 stems of rosemary and simmer with a cup of olive oil over medium heat for 5-7 minutes. Let the rosemary and oil cool, and then pour the olive oil and rosemary into a bottle. Seal the bottle and enjoy the beautiful and flavorful mixture yourself or give it as a gift.
  9. Container Gardens - Trailing varieties look great spilling over the edges of containers and upright varieties add height. Plant them alone or mix them with other herbs for your own little herb garden.
  10. Health & Well Being - Did you know rosemary is a memory booster? Yep, it’s been shown to enhance concentration and memory by stimulating the human nervous system. Add it to your food, bathwater or your aromatherapy routine.

Care Tips for Rosemary Indoors: To care for rosemary inside your home, the most important requirement during the winter months is sunlight. Place in a bright sunny window, and turn the plant so that it gets sun on both sides. The soil in the pot needs to be well drained. Water it from the top every other day. Water may remain in the saucer to provide humidity for the plant, but do not let the water touch the bottom of the plant. Adjust the watering schedule if necessary to be sure the soil never dries out.

Check out more of our favorite plants! OUR PLANTS OF THE WEEK >>

TREE-CYCLE! Here's how...

Just weeks ago you picked the perfect Christmas tree, and it doesn't have to go to waste. To us, the outcome is not only sustainable, but a fitting way to complete the cycle for this truest symbol of Christmas. Tree-cycling is the practice of recycling Christmas trees in order to extend their usability. Common practices include chipping trees for use as mulch in community areas, erosion protection in fragile areas such as river deltas, underwater habitat creation and shoreline stabilization. Why not turn it into mulch this year! That’s what most Hampton Roads localities do with live trees that are placed curbside or dropped off at specified collection areas for recycling after the holidays. The following cities and counties have posted their schedules for the 2013-2014 season. See below for your cities scheduled pickup.

Chesapeake
When: Dec. 26–Jan. 9
What to know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights. Place it separately from bulk waste and regular trash so it can be easily collected. Please do not put in a bag or put netting around it.
Where: Trees will be picked up on the regular trash collection day. Trees picked up after Jan. 2 will be recycled. If possible, please hold off until January 3 to put your tree out for collection.

Hampton
When: Ongoing
What to know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights. Place natural trees separate from bulk waste and regular trash. Do not put in a bag or put netting around it. Artificial trees can be disposed of at curbside as part of the bulk waste. Artificial trees should not be placed with leaves, grass or tree branches.
Where: Trees will be picked up at curbside on regular trash collection day. Residents can also bring naturally grown trees to be recycled at the Yard Waste Transfer Site, 100 N. Park Lane (off Big Bethel Road at entrance to Bethel Landfill) from 8 am to 3 pm Monday – Saturday (closed city holidays). For more information visit: www.hampton.gov/publicworks/solidwaste.

James City County
When: Dec. 26–Jan. 31
What to know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights.
Where: James City County’s three convenience centers:

  • Jolly Pond Road
    1204 Jolly Pond Road
    Open every day 7 am to 5 pm
  • Tewning Road
    117 Tewning Road
    Sunday – Closed
    Monday 8 am – 12 pm
    Tuesday – Saturday 8 am – 4 pm
  • Toano
    185 Industrial Boulevard (Hankins Industrial Park)
    Open every day 8 am – 4 pm

Newport News
When: Ongoing
What to know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights.
Where: Christmas trees can be brought to the Recovery Operations Center (formerly the Denbeigh Compost Facility), located at 550 Atkinson Way off Warwick Boulevard, Monday-Saturday from 8:00am – 4:00pm. Artificial trees cannot be accepted for mulching, but can be disposed of in trash container. For those who are unable to bring their trees to the Recovery Operations Center, natural trees can be placed in a brush pile separate from any bulk trash being set out an each area’s normal bulk waste collection day. To find your normal bulk waste collection day, please visit http://www.nngov.com/public-works/sw/resources/schedule or call 757-933-2311.

Norfolk
When: Ongoing
What to know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights.
Where: Trees will be picked up at curbside to be recycled on regular trash collection day as part of yard waste collection. Residents can also bring natural trees to the City’s Household Hazardous Waste Collection Center, 1176 Pineridge Road. The Center is open Monday through Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm. For more information go to www.norfolktrash.com.

Poquoson
When: Dec. 26 – Jan. 21
What to know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights.
Where: Residents can drop off natural trees to be recycled at the Municipal Pool Parking Lot or the VPPSA Compost Facility (locations listed below).

  • Municipal Pool Parking Lot
    16 Municipal Drive, Poquoson
  • VPPSA Compost Facility
    145 Goodwin Neck Road, Yorktown, VA 23692
    Monday – Saturday 8 am – 4 pm
    Closed Sundays

Portsmouth
When: Ongoing
What to Know: Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel, garland and lights.
Where: Curbside; residents may place their tree at the curb for pickup on their normal trash collection day.

Smithfield
When: Now – Jan. 16
What to know: Contact Alexandra Pearson at 365-4200 or apearson@smithfieldva.gov and provide your address if you have a Christmas tree to be picked up. Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and lights.

Suffolk
What to know: Tree are not recycled but residents can put them out for disposal for two weeks after Christmas with their regular trash and the collection will not be deducted from their annual (12) free bulk collections.

Virginia Beach
When: Normal trash collection day
What to know: Christmas trees will be handled as normal yard debris and need to be free of any decorations or tinsel. Trees collected curbside will be processed into compost. Trees dropped off at the City Landfill and Resource Recovery Center will be ground into mulch.
Where: Curbside or the City Landfill and Resource Recovery Center at 1989 Jake Sears Road with proof of residency.

Williamsburg
When: Jan. 6th and 13th
What to know: The City Crews will be collecting Christmas trees on Monday, January 6, 2014 and Monday, January 13, 2014. Trees must be placed at the curb before 7:00 a.m. and should be free of the stand, ornaments and lights. Please place separately from bulk waste and regular trash.

York County
When: Week of Jan. 6
What to know: Trees should be placed roadside by 7:00 a.m. on Monday for collection by the end of the week. Tree should be free of the stand, ornaments, tinsel and light.
Where: Natural trees will be picked up curbside for recycling only during the week of Jan. 6. Otherwise, trees can be brought to the VPPSA Compost Facility (location listed below) year-round.

  • VPPSA Compost Facility
    145 Goodwin Neck Road, Yorktown, VA 23692
    Monday – Saturday 8 am – 4 pm
    Closed Sundays

Dates provided by askhrgreen.org

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Merry Just Got Merrier

REDEEM YOUR MERRY MONEY! Friday-Sunday, December 19-21

Need a hostess gift, or a last minute gift idea or maybe just a little sprucing up before Santa’s arrival? Well merry just got merrier this season! Be sure to come in this weekend and redeem all of your stored up Merry Money. You’ll save up to 50% or half off the final purchase price on purchases, December 19 – 21.

Discover holiday gifts for everyone on your list: amaryllis, poinsettias, heirloom-quality tools, holiday decor, stocking stuffers, gift cards and even garden statuary. And now’s the perfect time to freshen up those holiday greens both inside and out. Nothing says Christmas like fresh and fragrant greenery. From greeter charms, to wreaths and aromatic rosemary, our fresh ideas will have your home looking its best, naturally. So don’t forget to stop in this weekend and redeem your Merry Money and save up to 50%.

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