The aromatic foliage of thyme will fill the air with scent on a warm sunny day, while its flowers are a magnet to wildlife. Its edible leaves are used fresh or dried to flavour soups, stews, fish, meat, sausages, stuffings and vegetable dishes. They are an important ingredient in bouquet garni and herbes de Provence.
Sow March to April
Plants hate too much water and are fairly drought tolerant. Ensure plants in pots are not allowed to dry out completely for any length of time during long hot, dry spells.
Place a collar of horticultural grit or gravel around plants in the ground to protect the foliage from wet soil.
Clip to shape after flowering with secateurs.
Remove fallen leaves that settle on thyme plants in autumn to prevent rotting.
Protect plants in pots from excessive winter wet by placing in a rain shadow or a dry, light position
Plant out in a warm, sunny spot in the garden. They demand well-drained soil and will rot over winter if the ground is too wet. If your soil is too heavy or you have a small garden, grow thyme in pots – they will thrive in 15cm (6in) pots filled with a gritty potting medium, ideally soil.
As they are evergreen, thyme can be picked all year round, but the leaves taste best during their natural growing season. Use scissors to snip off sprigs, ensuring cuts are made carefully to avoid spoiling the shape of plants. Use fresh or dried for later use.
Sown in groups that need the same soil conditions
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