Gallipoli Rosemary

In 1915 a wounded digger from Adelaide was repatriated to the Army Hospital at Keswick.

He brought back with him a small rosemary bush dug up from the slopes and ravines of the Anzac Cove and it was planted in the hospital grounds.

For decades small sprigs of the digger’s rosemary were worn to honour the fallen on Anzac and Armistice days and after the Repatriation Hospital was established during WW2 at Daw Park SA, cuttings were taken and it was grown into a hedge on the hospital grounds.

This history was only discovered by David Lawry, Founder and Director of the AoH Project, when as a landscaper in the late 1980’s he was inadvertently removing part of it during renovations and the hospital gardener told him of its origin.

Worried that it might all be lost he took cuttings and kept a number of them growing in his native nursery to conserve the plant for posterity.

In 2004 at the launch of the Avenues of Honour Project during the TREENET Symposium at Adelaide University’s Waite Arboretum the delegates planted all of these in symbolic anticipation of the thousands of trees that would be planted across Australia in the decades ahead.

Treenet Symposium delegates planting the Gallipoli Rosemary Hedge in 2004

Treenet Symposium delegates planting the Gallipoli Rosemary Hedge in 2004

From this hedge cuttings have been provided to the nursery industry and official labels produced which provide a royalty of 50 cents each to the project.

Gallipoli Rosemary

These Gallipoli Rosemary, part proceeds of which support the Avenues of Honour project, are now available for purchase.

You can download a PDF list of growers below:

Gallipoli Rosemary Growers



2 thoughts on “Gallipoli Rosemary

  1. editor

    I am very pleased to see the project where Rosemary from Gallipoli is being propagated and sold with ‘part’ of the proceeds going to establishing the Avenue of Honour Trees.
    However I would like to know what part of the proceeds. What percentage? How many trees?
    I am fully cognizant of the costs involved in such a venture, however I don’t think it is made clear, just how much will go to the Avenue.
    I do feel that transparency is essential here. After all, the fellows who died were transparent in their wish to protect Australia and its interests, and to make Australia a better place.
    Thank You.
    In memory of Trooper 323, 5th Australian Light Horse, W.J. O’Brien, who died in St Mary’s hospital on 2nd November, 1915, from horrific injuries sustained during the Gallipoli Landings.
    He was my paternal Great Uncle.
    Lyle Taylor
    Queensland 4213
    Lyle’s Email:

    1. editor

      Good morning Lyle,
      First, thanks for such an encouraging prompt in relation to TREENET’s Avenues of Honour Project (AoH). You have described the WW1 association of your great uncle and the supreme sacrifice he made not only as part of the 5th Australian Light Horse Regiment (comprised of men who had responded to the call in Queensland in 1914 and subsequently arriving on foreign shores as the 2 Light Horse Brigade) but as an individual. Through your efforts and that of the AoH Project we are keen to see that the memory of his short service on behalf of Australia is not lost.
      AoH is endeavouring to revitalise the notion of commemorative trees – living memorials – that are attached to and recognise and honour individual service & sacrifice. We encourage federal, state & local government authorities, service organisations, families and members of the community to help capture information with a view to preserving and reinstating existing avenues of honour and as necessary to establish new or replacement commemorative plantings.
      Our research has uncovered ~ 600 original avenues of honour across Australia, so there is much work to do in discovering their condition, their restoration needs and their commemorative stories.
      As you can appreciate such an ambitious project requires huge resources in terms of people and funding and we continue to gently progress our aspirations and enjoy successes.
      No funding from any source has been provided to TREENET to purchase or plant trees in the ground – that’s not our role – but we do provide technical advice and have access to a broad network of stakeholders across the nation. To date we have also created the first stage of an interactive website with a view to having an accessible and comprehensive database linking to the commemorative plantings and avenues and their stories of service and sacrifice. If you are able, please visit for more information.
      167, 855 pots of Gallipoli Rosemary have been sold across Australia between January 2010 till February 2015. Whilst all related royalty payments are yet to be collected, this has netted the TREENET AoH Project $55,562.50 over the past five years. (The royalty = 50c per pot sold).
      So as you can see, the royalties from the sales of Gallipoli Rosemary provide a modest contribution to the operations, networking and promotion of the AoH Project.
      Thanks again for your email, it is very much appreciated.
      If I can be of any further help, I’d be pleased to continue this conversation.
      (on behalf of the AoH Team)


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