- botanical name: Hyssopus officinalis
- perennial zones 4-8
- height 18-24″
- spacing 6-12″ apart, in rows 18″ apart
- full sun tolerant, morning sun/afternoon shade
- prefers light rocky soil
- flower color blue
- uses in garden: as a border, great in containers, cut flower
- attracts bees and butterflies
Blue Hyssop is an ornamental herb with large amounts of strikingly bright blue flowers and a lovely bushy growth habit. It attracts bees and butterflies. The leaves are said to have a slightly bitter, mint-like flavor, sometimes used in herbal teas. Blue Hyssop is not used for cooking but has a history of medicinal use; anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic properties are attributed to it.
In the gospel of John, 19:59, “They filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it into his mouth.” In I Kings 4:23 Solomon “spoke of trees, from the cedar tree that is in Lebanon even unto the hyssop that springeth out of the wall.”
Blue Hyssop seeds are also available. Purchase seeds here.
Indoors – sow several seeds 1/4 inch deep in flats in early spring. 5-21 days to germination. Thin or transplant to one seedling per cell when they are big enough to handle. When the plants are several inches high they can be transplanted outside 6-12″ apart.
Outdoors – recommended planting method – in spring, direct seed about 1/4″ deep, one seed per inch, in rows 18″ apart. Plants should eventually be given 6-12″ spacing.
Easy to grow, this plant requires little care. Bright blue-violet flowers bloom from June to October. Cut back flowers to promote more blooming.
A light rocky soil is preferable to one that is rich and moist.
Harvest – flowering tops or whole herb in flower are harvested just as blooming begins (usually mid-summer). Tie in bunches and hang under shade to dry.