Gardeners’ World share best tips for planting aromatic Hyssop – from pruning to harvesting

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The plant, which is also known as Hyssopus Officinalis, comes from the mint family. Hyssop can be planted in borders or used as an edging plant in the garden and provides a good source of nectar for bees.

Ideal conditions

Hyssop thrives when exposed to full sun.

The shrub should be planted in moist, well-drained, soil.

Early spring is the best time to prune the plant, Gardeners’ World advised.

pruning will help to promote thick growth. 

According to the Royal Horticultural Society, the flowered shoots from the previous year’s growth, should be removed when they have grown between 1.5 centimetres and 2.5 centimetres.

Hyssop can be planted in borders or used as an edging plant.

The plant can be grown in a pot, but should be large enough to accommodate its roots. They can grow up to two feet tall.

Growing from seed

Hyssop can also be grown from seed. 

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The seeds should be sown indoors or straight into the ground when no further frost is expected.

The seeds take around 14 to 21 days to germinate. 

The shrub’s aromatic scent is known to repel aphids, so can prove an effective method for controlling pests in a vegetable garden.

When buying hyssop, Gardeners’ World advised to check the plant for any pests or signs of disease. 

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Harvesting the shrub

After harvesting the leaves, they can be used straight after being freshly picked.

Gardeners’ World also suggested drying or freezing the leaves.

The website advised picking the leaves in the morning once any dew has dried.

The stems should be cut and hung in a dark place, which has good ventilation.

The leaves make a tasty addition to a hearty dish, such as a stew, or meat, including lamb.

Its aromatic leaves and flowers made a popular ingredient in cooking during the Medieval times. 

It is now more commonly used in tea, for treating a cough or cold.

A range of liquors which contain dried hyssop flower tops include Chartreuse, Absinthe and Vermouth.

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