Thyme has been used for centuries for it’s medicinal and culinary value. The botanical name for the herb is Thymus vulgaris. It is an evergreen perennial herb in the Lamiaceae family. Thyme is a great seasoning for poultry dishes.
When it is done growing leaves Thyme produces a pretty purple flower. The flowers are edible. Plant and grow thyme in your Phoenix garden in four easy steps.
Phoenix Gardening Steps: Grow Thyme
- When and how to plant thyme
- What grows well near thyme and what doesn’t?
- How to care for thyme
- Harvesting thyme- When is the ideal time to pick thyme?
When and How to Plant Thyme
Thyme can be transplanted to your Phoenix garden in the months of February and March. Seeds should be sown under 1/4 inch of soil and started indoors.
Seedlings will start to sprout in two to three weeks. Due to the length of time it takes for thyme to reach maturity thyme is often grown from a cutting rather than seeds.
The herb can grow six to twelve inches in height and spread up to eight inches. If growing more than one plant space at least 12 inches apart.
Companionship Planting Thyme
Thyme, like most aromatic herbs, complements nearly all crop plants. It is especially beneficial to cabbage because it deters the cabbageworm. Eggplants, tomatoes, and sage are also companion plants to Thyme.
How to Care for the Herb Thyme
Light Requirements: Thyme needs full sun or about 6-8 hours of sun a day.
Soil Requirements: Prefers rich fertile soil. Thyme prefers slightly acidic pH. The soil pH range of 6-7 is ideal.
Water Requirements: Thyme prefers moist soil. Water three times per week or as needed to keep the soil moist.
Pruning should cease around six weeks before a frost. In Phoenix, first frost is usually in mid December.
When to Harvest Thyme
Once thyme begins to flower it will stop producing seeds and leaves. The herb will not taste as good once it flowers. From seeds thyme can take up to 200 days from seed to harvest.
If sown indoors in December the herb would not reach maturity until the end of May or June.
Propagate & Preserve
Thyme is easily propagated with a cutting. This aromatic herb can easily be preserved. Just snip a bunch of stems, tie a string or rubberband at the end of the bunch and air dry.