Add fungi to flavour your rosemary says latest cross-industry research

Add fungi to flavour your rosemary says latest cross-industry research. Image: Royal Horticultural Society.

Research from the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has shown that the addition of mycorrhizal fungi to soil leads to increased production of essential oils in rosemary.

This makes the plants more aromatic and flavoursome.

Mycorrhiza are beneficial fungi that grow in association with plant roots, increasing the area from which plants can absorb nutrients and water.

The fungi are widely available commercially for gardeners to add to their soil to help plants become more vigorous, overcome plant problems and cope with conditions of drought, amongst other uses.

The research also found that the fungi more consistently colonised the root area when it was mixed in with soil prior to growing on.

Adding mycorrhizal fungi did not affect the shape or structure of the plant, just the production of the compounds that enhance the flavour and taste of rosemary. This means that home gardeners and trade growers will be able to produce rosemary plants with a consistent appearance but with the potential for extra flavour.

The RHS saw a dramatic increase in interest in herbs over autumn, with searches increasing by close to 600 per cent compared to 2021.

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Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.