LEMON BALM, SWEET BALM

FAMILY: Lamiaceae | GENUS: MELISSA officinalis

TYPE
  • Perennials
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Full Sun
  • Partial Shade
WATER
  • Regular Water
PLANTING ZONES
  • US (Upper South) / Zone 6
  • MS (Middle South) / Zone 7
  • LS (Lower South) / Zone 8
  • CS (Coastal South) / Zone 9

Plant Details

From southern Europe. A single plant grows to about 2 feet tall, 112 feet widebut plants self-sow and spread rapidly, sometimes becoming pests. Leaves are used fresh in cold drinks, fruit cups, salads, fish dishes; dried leaves give lemon perfume to sachets, potpourris. Likes rich soil. Shear occasionally to keep compact. Lemon-scented, heavily veined foliage is light green in the species. Check catalogs to find 'Aurea' and 'All Gold', 'Variegata', intensely fragrant 'Citronella', and the hardier and more intense 'Quedlinburger Niederliegende'.

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