A marvelous monarda


This is Monarda fistulosa “Claire Grace,” also known as wild bergamot. Lovely, isn’t she? I bought this plant last year, and it is now about three feet high. It is reported to be aggressive (it’s a member of that horrible mint family) but it hasn’t tried anything funny in my garden yet.

Here’s a view of it in the perennial bed, so you can get an idea of its size.


The plant is native to most of the United States. It’s a butterfly and native bee magnet and the hummingbirds love it, too.

The leaves have medicinal properties, and are brewed into teas to treat ulcers and cuts, and even indigestion. In the photo below, taken early in the morning, a sleepy bee is chilling on one of the flowers.


You can grow this plant just about anywhere in the country in a sunny, well-drained location. It is hardy from Zone 3b to Zone 9b, and it’s quite resistant to powdery mildew. I cut a couple of stems to test its vase-worthiness and the flowers hold up really well.

In my garden, it has proven to be a fine plant indeed.


About dirtynailz

Writer for a daily newspaper, gardener, tree hugger, orchid-grower, photographer, animal lover, hiker, wilderness seeker. Proponent of clover in the lawn and a dog on the bed.
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2 Responses to A marvelous monarda

  1. Andy Brown says:

    Your bergamot is a lot tidier than mine. Mine ranges from two feet to five or six feet high, since it has to vie with ox-eye sunflower and goldenrod. Here are some pictures, including the hummingbird moths that the plant seems to attract.


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