C is for Calamints

   

                    Calamint officinalis                                                              Showy Variegated Calamint

Calamints are another of the perfectly polite perennial herbs and I first came across them many years ago. The plant was named Calamentha calamentha which was a lovely plant with pretty pink flowers. Alas I lost the plant when we moved. A few years later I was giving a tour of the Virginia State Arboretum herb garden and Tom DeBaggio was doing a book signing at the same event. I asked him about the plant as I was not able to track it down again. He identified it as Calamentha grandiflora or Showy Calamint. There are also several other calamints which are part of the mint flower. The smaller calamints have small leaves and pretty little white flowers which makes the whole plant look like a shaggy green soccer ball covered in blossom! The showy calamint though is definitely a beautiful plant and whether you get the variegated leaf or the green leaf they are both great additions to the perennial bed as well as the herb garden. In warmer climates  keep the variegated calamint in some light shade so that it doesn’t burn. The variegated one is also not quite as hardy as the standard green calamint and may only be hardy to zone 6 unless it is protected in winter.


Comments

C is for Calamints — 3 Comments

  1. yes I think it can. Just give it full sun and well drained soil. I have not researched which UK growers have it, but see if you can find a herb specialist perhaps or possibly a Thompson and Morgan type place. Let me know if you cannot find it and I will dig a little further for you.

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