The word rosemary comes from the term “rosmarinus,” which means “the dew of the sea.” According to legend, rosemary flowers are blue because the Virgin Mary spread her blue cloak across a rosemary plant while she rested one day. Thus the shrubs got the name “The Rose of Mary.” Ancient Greek students used to wear a crown of rosemary, as the herb is said to aid memory. Later, it became known as an herb of remembrance, and was placed on coffins at funerals.
Rosemary oil, ct. verbenone, Italy is derived from evergreen shrubs native to the region. They may grow as tall as six feet. The flowers are light blue and attractive. The aroma is clean and penetrating but noticably different than Spanish Rosemary which has a higher cineol content and only trace amounts of verbenone. Oils from this region of Italy may be higher than 14 percent verbenone.
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