Plant FinderPlant Finder Graphic
Zone
Zones vary by species.
Full SunPartial Sun
Full, Partial
Ample WaterRegular Water
Ample, Moderate

Monarda

Bee Balm, Oswego Tea, Horsemint
Lamiaceae (Labiatae)
Herbs, Perennials

Native to eastern North America. Bushy, leafy clumps grow to 2–4 ft. high with an initial width of about 1 1/2 ft.; after that, they spread rapidly at the edges but are not really invasive. Dark green, 4–6-in.-long leaves have a strong, pleasant odor like a blend of mint and basil. In summer, upright stems are topped by tight clusters of long-tubed flowers much visited by hummingbirds. Divide every 3 or 4 years. Not long-lived in areas with warm winters and long, hot summers.

Monarda didyma ‘Marshall’s Delight’
Monarda didyma ‘Marshall’s Delight’

Click to Enlarge

Monarda didyma

The basic species has scarlet flowers surrounded by reddish bracts. All bloom over a long period of 2 months or more when spent flowers are removed. Don’t let soil dry out.

You Might Also Like...

Hypericum androsaemum

Shade-tolerant semievergreen native shrub from Europe and western Asia. Grows to 3 ft. tall and wide, ...

Arbutus

These broad-leafed evergreens have ornamental bark, clusters of little urn-shaped flowers, decorative ...

Nemesia

Colorful South African natives, some with fragrant flowers. Not at their best in hot weather, tho...

Find Your Sunset Climate Zone

Find Your Sunset Climate Zone

View Maps Learn More

Advertisement