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THYMUS x citriodorus

Image of Thymus x citriodorus

Jesse Saylor

Family

Lamiaceae

Botanical Name

THYMUS x citriodorus

Plant Common Name

Lemon Thyme

General Description

Talk about a great culinary thyme! Lemon thyme is an attractive, wonderfully flavorful perennial herb with a low, spreading, bushy habit. From early to midsummer it bears many small, rounded clusters of pale lilac flowers that become thronged by bees. Its tiny, oval, evergreen leaves are dark green and smell of citrus and thyme when bruised. These can be harvested throughout the season and combine well with fish, poultry, and vegetables. It is a cross between the European species Thymus pulegioides and T. vulgaris.

Thyme grows best in full sun and well-drained neutral to alkaline soil with average fertility. Established plants are quite heat and drought tolerant. Prune back dead stems in spring. Moist winter soils can cause root and stem rot, so be sure this herb is given excellent drainage.

Lemon thyme is a versatile herb because it's attractive as well as functional. There are several variegated cultivars, which are most desirable for formal or perennial garden plantings. Plant it in herb or rock gardens and containers. It is also ideal for garden borders or edges.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 6

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    5 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Herb

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    10"-12" / 25.4cm - 30.5cm

  • Width

    1'-2' / 0.3m - 0.6m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Cushion/Mound-forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Pink, Lavender

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green, Dark Green

  • Bark Color

    Sandy Brown

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    Yes

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    Yes

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Container, Edging, Edible, Herb / Vegetable, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes