Rosemary Harvest


When and how to harvest Rosemary for stems and essential oil

Most farmers do not harvest rosemary for the first 15-21 months after sowing or plants establishment. From the second year onwards, they harvest once or twice a year.

As a rule of thumb, if you grow rosemary for plant material, you shall prefer young shoots and you may have to harvest two or more times per year, in order to promote new growth. 

If you grow rosemary for essential oil, knowing when exactly to harvest is very important for the quantity and quality of essential oil. It requires extensive research and constant “trial and error” procedure. First you have to decide if you plan to produce essential oil from leaves, flowers, stems or all of the above (distill the whole plant). Stems and leaves -when distilled- can normally produce essential oil of higher quantity but of lower quality, compared to the flowers.

Many professional rosemary growers have reported that harvesting stems and leaves exactly before the flowering results in essential oil of superior quality, while harvesting stems and leaves after the flowering often results in smelly product. However, this is just a common reported pattern that should not be followed without making your own research. In other cases, growers wait until some plants bloom and then they collect only the flowers, which -after distillation- give a high quality essential oil, but normally of very low quantity.

In many countries, rosemary is harvested mechanically via machines attached to tractors. Those machines cut the stems in predefined length in order to promote new growth. In developing countries, farmers harvest rosemary by hand. They cut the stems with special knives and they often let them dry in the sun for 2-3 days.

You can enrich this article by leaving a comment or photo of your rosemary plants harvesting methods and techniques. 

Rosemary Plant Wiki

How to grow Rosemary at home

Growing Rosemary for Profit

Rosemary Growing Conditions

Sowing and Planting Rosemary, Seeding Rate and Plant Population

Rosemary Water Requirements

Rosemary Fertilizer Requirements

Rosemary Weed Control

Rosemary Harvest

Rosemary Plant and Essential Oil Yield

Q&As Rosemary Plant

Do you have experience in cultivating rosemary? Please share your experience, methods and practices in the comments below.

All the content you add will be soon reviewed by our agronomists. Once approved, it will be added to and it will influence positively thousands of new and experienced farmers across the world.


This site uses cookies to enhance your experience

If you not change browser settings, you agree to it. Learn more

I understand

By using our Website, you agree to our Terms of Use and Cookie Policy The Greatest Free Online Farming Library

Connect with Wikifarmer

Sign up for our free newsletter

  • Wikifarmer News
  • Tips and advice from experts
  • Special offers and discounts

Contact us

     Wikifarmer Official

T: +44(0)7391105509


This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Contact form