A genus of over a hundred species, mostly native
to temperate regions, particularly of the Mediterranean.
Of the dwarf creeping species, Thymus serpyllum, six
inches, with its small, green ovate foliage, about
half an inch long, and purple flowers, a quarter
of an inch long, is one of the best known.
It has various forms:
var. albus, white;
var. argenteus, silver variegated foliage;
var. aureus, yellow variegated foliage;
var. cinereus, lilac flowers;
var. coccineus, crimson flowers and of taller
habit than type;
var. lanuginosus, greyish-green pubescent foliage;
and a number of others, including some of garden
origin; all have aromatic foliage.
The Lemon-scented Thyme (Thymus citriodorus),
six to nine inches, with small leaves, lemon-scented,
and pink flowers, has silver variegated and golden
The Thymes are easily grown in any well-drained
soil, in the crevices between paving-stones, and
particularly effective when used as carpeters
for early spring-flowering bulbous subjects.
Propagate by division, layering, cuttings or from
The flowering season is from June to September
Three to six inches.
Flowers red-purple, inconspicuous.
The commoner ornamental Thymes are useful as
edgings, having a neat compact growth.
chiefly grown for their smell, the flowers being
small and rather insignificant.
Golden Thyme has
pretty yellow leaves, and the Lemon-scented variety
should always be afforded a place.
has downy foliage.
Thymus serpyllum coccineum the
flowers are a fine crimson.
Plant well-rooted pieces of the plants early in
the spring, in rather light soil with sunny exposure.
After two years the plants should be pulled to
pieces and the best bits replanted.
If a quantity
of Thyme is needed, it will be better to take
off small rooted pieces in April, and grow them
on in nursery beds, always having a stock of young
plants coming on.