city garden: rosemary.

Rosemary has many charms: tasty and versatile, beautiful and fragrant, hardy and steadfast. It's the plant in my windowsill garden that I'm able to think about the least: with (or perhaps despite) the occasional water and trim, it thrives.

+SUN: Give your plant as much sunlight as you can, so choose a bright spot on your windowsill or balcony.

+WATER: Let the soil dry out significantly between waterings; I water my rosemary plant every three to four days. A trick for remembering how much water your plants need is to picture them in their natural habitats (this isn't helpful if you don't know where they hail from, of course, but Google can help with that). I like to imagine my rosemary plant living in the dry soil of Provence, which reminds me that a lack of water does it good, not harm.

+CARE: This plant is low-maintenance (cheers to that!). Snip the new growth off the top, pictured in the image below, to use in your cooking. One thing to watch out for are bugs: rosemary is no more or less susceptible to them than other plants are, but just keep an eye on the leaves to watch that you don't develop an aphid infestation or something of the sort.

+TYPES: My plant was a gift from a friend, and I love its stately shape. If you're new to growing things, select a good-sized rosemary plant from a local nursery for assured success. I love the idea of incorporating a larger one into your holiday decorations as a simple, useful detail.

+USES: Rosemary is my favorite herb to use in colder weather, because the taste it adds is rich, warm, and savory. Finely chopped, it gives soups and sauces more depth. Clip a few sprigs to tuck among root vegetables as they roast. Potatoes and rosemary go especially well together: try them cooked like this, which I love. Like many herbs, rosemary is anti-inflammatory, so I try to eat a lot of it. Any other recipe ideas you'd recommend to me?

+See more from my city garden, here.