Friday, 19 December 2008

ANISE HYSSOP - AGASTACHE FOENICULUM

One of the best things about growing different vegetables and herbs for the first time are the surprises that await you as these tiny seeds or seedlings are placed in soil and tended occasionally and just left to grow and become what they are.

Our greatest surprise last summer was a herb we bought at the herb society last year.

The label said Agastache foeniculum, Tea Herb and Bee and bird attracting.
This one glorious plant attracted lots of bees to our garden and obviously the bees did there work in pollinating lots of other herbs and veggies in the garden.
We had an amazing amount of cucumbers.

I cut the plant back harshly and it died(or maybe it was my neighbours use of poisons on the fence line and his drive way).
This year we have not as many bees and less cucumbers.
This was a really majestic plant and I would recommend gardeners have a couple in their summer gardens.
These photos I took look a bit washed out compared to the real thing.
I have learnt another valuable lesson in loosing this plant, slow down in the garden take care of what you are growing and companion planting and bee attracting plants work.


The common name is Anise hyssop, a hardy perennial, grows to 2-3 ft (6ocm-1m), long spikes of purple- blue flowers. Grows in rich moist soil in a sunny position flowers in summer. Propagate in spring by seed or divide creeping root. Use dried leaves as a seasoning or infuse as a tea.

There is good information about herbal teas at this site The Herbal Tea Garden

If you want an adventure check out all you can do with garden herbs at Alchemy Works

3 comments:

Sally Forth said...

So that's what we have in our garden! Thanks very much!

Chook said...

Very interesting! Are the cucumber plants you have this year as big and vigorous but with less flowers? Are they in the same location?

Maggie said...

We planted the cucumbers in a different place. On thing I learnt from someone on the KGI forum is that anise hyssop helps repel cabbage butterflies and I notice we have more of them this year.