Lemon Thyme

Botanical Name: Thymus x citriodorus

Lemon thyme is a perennial plant with glossy green diamond shaped leaves and pale lilac-pink flowers in spring /summer. It has a very definite lemon smell and flavour along with the herby flavour of regular thyme.

The leaves can be used in any recipe calling for lemon juice or lemon zest or lemon flavoring. While you can use it in any recipes where thyme is included, it flavours chicken, fish and vegetable dishes superbly. Use in stuffing, soups and sprinkle over baked vegetables. Nice stirred through cooked mushrooms and omelettes or sprinkled on sardines.

Thymes antiseptic and anti-bacterial properties make it useful as a herbal tea to help relieve colds (throat and chest), bronchitis, coughs, asthma, laryngitis and tonsillitis. Many pharmaceutical gargles, cough drops, mouth washes, and vapour rubs contain thymes constituent thymol. Thymol destroys bacteria and fungus. Use externally for fungal infections, bites, aches and pains.

The dried leaves can be added to herb pillows and potpourris.

In the garden thyme grows well as a companion to cabbage, onions, roses and salad burnet.

Growing Conditions

Lemon thyme prefers well drained soil in an open sunny position. Suitable for a neutral to slightly alkaline soil and will grow happily in a rock garden. Thyme does not like wet feet and will grow well in a container on a sunny windowsill or veranda.