Agastache: the ‘Humming Bird Mint’

Agastache is a genus of plants in the nettle or Lamiaceae family – known for its anti-oxidant properties –  related to the Salvias and Mints. Most species originate from North America and are completely hardy and flower for months on end, they are well suited to the hot dry summer conditions here and tolerate the cold winters nights of the Massif Central. They are nectar rich and in the wild they are pollinated by humming birds and butterflies, the bees love them too. They are stunning plants for the cottage garden border, containers and herb garden, but did you know that many of them are edible and almost all of them can be used to make refreshing tisanes?

The flowers are edible and can be used to brighten up salads as a garnish or frozen in ice cubes for a floral addition to summer drinks and the flowers, stems and leaves can be used either on their own or in a blended herbal tea or ’tisane’ . In Asia the genus is used extensiely in herbal medicine and can be used to treat nausea, lack of appetite, colds and fevers, indigestion and is said to have many more medicinal and well being properties.

We love Agastache at Le Jardin Creatif and have a collection of different species with 6 available at our nursery. The feature image if Agastache ‘Rose Mint’ with pink flowers and highly fragrant foliage.

We also have Agastache ‘Apricot Sprite’, A. cana, A. rupestres, À. rugosa (the ‘Korean Mint’), A. ‘Astello Indigo’

You can start your own collection, come along to the nursery on Saturdays 10-4 or this Sunday (23rd June) when we will be open with two other local gardens for the ‘Jardins Ouverts‘ scheme.

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