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Wild Bergamot / Bee Balm (Monarda fistulosa)



  • Common Name: Wild Bergamot or Bee Balm

  • Sci Name: Monarda fistulosa

  • Type of plant: Herbaceous perennial

  • Sun: Full sun to partial shade

  • Soil: Well-draining, fertile soil

  • Moisture: Moderate moisture

  • Season of Interest: Summer

  • Height: Typically 2-4 feet tall

  • Width: 1-2 feet wide

  • Color: Lavender to pinkish-purple flowers

  • Where to Plant: Gardens, meadows, or naturalized areas

  • Benefits for area: Attracts pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds; adds color and fragrance to the landscape

  • Medicinal: Used in traditional medicine for its antibacterial and antifungal properties; also used to soothe sore throats and alleviate cold symptoms

  • Edible: Leaves and flowers can be used to make herbal tea or added to salads for flavor

  • Host plant for: Various butterflies and moths

    1. Hermit sphinx moth (Sphinx eremitus)

    1. Clearwing moth (Hemaris spp.)

    1. Common Buckeye butterfly (Junonia coenia)

    1. Hummingbird Clearwing moth (Hemaris thysbe)

    1. White-lined Sphinx moth (Hyles lineata)

  • Spring Care: Cut back any dead growth from the previous year and provide light fertilizer.

  • Summer Care: Water regularly to maintain moderate moisture levels, deadhead spent flowers to encourage more blooms.

  • Fall Care: Mulch around the base of the plant to protect roots during winter.

  • Winter Care: Wild Bergamot is hardy and typically requires zero care in winter.

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