Agastache, a very fragrant flower

Agastache is a plant that boasts many assets. Its appeal lies in its foliage, flowers and therapeutic properties.

Main Agastache facts

Name – Agastache
Family – Lamiaceae
Type – perennial

Height – 12 to 48 inches (30 to 120 cm)
Exposure – full sun
Soil – light, well-drained

Blooming – May to October

Let’s take a look at how to grow Agastache and get to rediscover this plant.

Planting agastache

How to plant agastache

You can plant agastache starting in October and all the way to May-June, keeping a distance of 10 to 12 inches (25 to 30 cm) between plants.

  • Agastache likes full sun but it also tolerates part sun.
  • It appreciates well drained soil, even poor.
  • Being planted in the sun is where agastache is at its best in terms of flavor.

How to sow agastache

If sowing from seed, sow agastache during the month of March in a sheltered place.

  • In any case, select a full sun location.
  • Once it has set root and has settled in properly, agastache will go to seed and re-seed itself and will ultimately form a nice flowery cover along the ground.

Propagating agastache

You can propagate agastache in spring or fall through crown division.

Watering agastache

This plant copes well with having a lot of sun, but must be watered in case of elevated temperatures.

If growing it in pots, don’t wait for the soil to be completely dry before watering again; simply water often but in moderate amounts.

Harvesting agastache

Beautiful purple-colored agastache flower close-up.Agastache is best collected in the morning during the vegetation phase, from spring up to the end of summer, but it is still fine when collected at other times of the year.

  • Wait for the plant to have grown quite a bunch of leaves before harvesting for the first time.
  • Dried agastache leaves keep very well, they can last several months.

Note that when you crumple agastache flowers and leaves, they produce a soft mint-like fragrance with a touch of aniseed. It is very pleasurable.

All there is to know about agastache

Agastache is part of the Lamiaceae family, as is sage. Both plants are thus well known both for their medicinal properties and for their taste: leaves of both are used in culinary preparations as a spice herb.

Types of recipes it is used in include desserts, jams, sauces and more, thanks to its licorice, aniseed-like taste.

A bumblebee pollinating an agastache flower.Although Agastache is the scientific name, more common appellations are hummingbird mint and giant hyssops. It is a relative of mint, but has nothing to do with hyssops.

Two varieties, Agastache foeniculum and Agastache rugosa, are used to prepare tea that helps stimulate digestion and counters vomiting and diarrhea. Dried leaves and flowers are the best parts of the plant for this.

Also very ornamental and simply of a high value as a spice, this plant is also used simply to decorate the garden and cook delicious flavorful meals. Use young leaves in salad or prepare tea and infusions from them.

An extremely melliferous plant, agastache will grow well in a flower bed or along edges, in a rocky pile or a sand patch, and it’ll even fit right into a garden box on your balcony or terrace. You’ll be attracting butterflies and other beautiful insects – or hummingbirds! – in no time.

Smart tip about agastache

Flower your beds with plants of all colors, shapes and sizes!

The many Agastache varieties will help and in time, just as for the iris flower, a new hybrid might even appear!

Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Hummingbird on Agastache by USFWS Mountain-Prairie under © CC BY 2.0
Blue Agastache by Dan Mullen under © CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Agastache with bee by Debbie under © CC BY-NC-ND 2.0