Hyssop (Hyssop officinalis)
Lamiaceae, or mint family
Harvest top 6-8 inches of flexible stem for medicine making, when it just begins to flower. If you further cut back to the woody growth each season it is possible to harvest twice a year.
USDA Growing Zone(s): Hyssop is hardy to zones 3-9.
Hyssop is a pollinator plant that attracts bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies. It is a short lived perennial in the mint family and is replaced every 3 years in the garden for maximum flowering. Hyssop prefers well-drained soil, warmth, and full sun to part shade.
It prefers well-limed, rocky, poor soil, regular but moderate watering. Hyssop is a great choice for a garden bed end plant, perennial border plant, or orchard plant for pollination.
The flowers of the hyssop plant can be violet-blue, pink, or white. As it matures, hyssop forms bushes that can grow from one to three feet tall.
Historically, hyssop has been used to treat respiratory illness, epilepsy, snakebite, worms, joint pain, lice, gas, muscle pain, and more.
Stories & Traditions
Hyssop is native to Southern Europe and Eurasia. It was brought to North America by colonists in the 1600s and can now be found growing wild in various places in North America.
In the Victorian era “language of flowers,” hyssop is a symbol of sacrifice and cleanliness. Dried hyssop leaves have a clean scent and can be added to potpourri and sachets.
This content is for educational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice or a substitute for medical treatment. Please consult your medical care provider before using herbal medicine.