Aromatic plants

White rosemary (Rosmarinus tomentosus)

The Rosmarinus tomentosus, also called ” Romero Blanco ” is a plant that is part of a particular ecosystem, and salinity rocks need for further development. If you want to know its characteristics, its shape and in what type of habitats it develops, then we will give you all the details you need to know about this plant.

Do you want to know a species of plant that is endemic in the coastal area of ​​Malaga and Granada and that is environmentally protected by urbanization ? This plant is of the shrub type, although on some occasions it can be seen as a creeping plant and can reach a height of between 30 and 50 centimeters high approximately.

Description of the Rosmarinus Tomentosus

In general, you will see them in their green color, although many of them show whitish details, which make them look like a woolly plant. This has to do with the fact that its great density of leaves shows fine white hairs, and it is from that tomentum that its name tomentosus comes.

Its leaves can measure up to approximately two centimeters and occur in large populations on silver, almost stacked. Its inflorescences are in the form of clusters.

The flowers have very particular tones, which stand out for a bluish to violet color on their lower lip, presenting a light brown color on their upper part. It has stamens that stand out to the flower in the form of an arch.

Habitat

The environmental conditions in which this plant develops are not common, that is why they are not usually seen in gardens, but rather in places where the rock is predominant, such as sea cliffs. That is why it is a plant with a rupicolous environment, which feeds on environmental salinity and the wind that spreads it.

All this environment gives it the amount of magnesium it needs for its survival, even living vertically on these cliffs with other species with the same environmental characteristics.

As we mentioned before, this plant is endemic in certain areas, especially in the provinces of Granada and Malaga. In the latter one can see two well-marked populations separated from each other, also presenting some discontinuities in the nucleus of these populations.

In the interior of Malaga it can also be found in two specific locations, but then it does not appear in any other location.

How the Rosmarinus Tomentosus lives

This is a plant that can be called shrubby and has an average life of approximately 50 years. The leaves that we see can have a duration on the plant that varies between 7 and 14 months.

This plant will have flowering and fruiting throughout the year and its pre- flowering occurs between the months of October and March, while the process of renewal of its stems and leaves occurs during the spring months.

The persistence of its populations is threatened because it is found in Mediterranean areas prone to recurrent fires and biologists have not detected that this plant regenerates after forest fires.

At first glance, this plant could be mistaken for a common rosemary, but its particular location makes it a very particular species. This species can only be seen endemically on the coast of the Sierra Almijara, not occurring anywhere else in the province and this has to do with the dolomitic limestone soils found in the area.

Threats of the species

Human pressure is the most marked threat trait for Rosmarinus tomentosus. The area where it is located is prone to pollution produced by tourism and to urbanization and road expansion.

There have been areas of total disappearance due to these road works, such as in Castell de Ferro, where there are no more records, or in Almuñécar, where the number of their population has been considerably reduced.

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