Thyme For Meditation

Thymus x citriodorus (Silver Edge Thyme)

Thyme in the meditation circle is green and healthy. After a year of growth it has gently spread, helping to soften the path of stepping stones. I am not completely convinced the trays were correctly labeled when I purchased these plants last year, but they were marked Thymus x citriodorus (Silver Edge Thyme). This thyme is not fragrant at all, but I must have thought with “citriodorus” in the name, it would be become fragrant eventually!

Dianthus and Thymus x citriodorus (Silver Edge Thyme) Along Meditation Path

Drought-tolerant plants were selected for this labyrinth and some that performed great last summer may be staying too wet this summer. A few heavy downpours knocked over plants several weeks ago, blocking many of the paths. Yesterday was clean-up time.  I sheared away lots of Penstemon mexicali ‘Pike’s Peak Purple’ (Beardtongue) and Angelonia angustifolia ‘Angelface Blue’ (Summer Snapdragon) to open up the stepping stones.

While some of the Pike’s Peak are still blooming, many are brown and look like they may not even survive. Similarly the center planting of Iberis sempervirens ‘Purity’ (Candytuft) has died back significantly. Iberis bloomed from December to May this year and maybe just needs a rest. It may revive in the fall, but at this point last August, the Candytuft was lush and healthy-looking.

Meditation Circle


I realize the fence along back of the Western border looks awfully bright. While a new ‘Carolina Sapphire’ Cypress gets established, a mix of annuals were supposed to fill the void and provide vibrant summer color along the back fence.  The seeds did poorly though, giving just one small group of zinnias.  The cypress is growing fine though.

During a few weeks of drought and extreme temperatures in July, the garden had quickly turned brown and dried up. Convinced the garden was finished until September, I turned my attention elsewhere. Then something interesting happened. Rains returned and the garden responded. Now the garden overall is probably the greenest it has been in August for years. The last few summers have been so discouragingly dry, I failed to recognize and appreciate that this summer was different. 

So yesterday I began to make amends. I trimmed back some Shasta Daisies, Echinacea and a few other things to make them tidier and to encourage re-blooming. I did save a few cone heads for the American Goldfinches. There is still a lot of clean-up to do, but now I am much more motivated to make plans for autumn plantings.

Though an annual, the Angelonia should provide color into October.

Angelonia angustifolia ‘Angelface Blue’ (Summer Snapdragon)

6 thoughts on “Thyme For Meditation

  1. Cathy

    I also think just getting out and doing some trimming is a good feeling. I ‘ve found that even though so much is singed and wilting in my garden, a tidy-up can work wonders! Has your thyme flowered yet? Mine has been wonderful in the heat, but smelled stronger in spring.

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      You’re right. I do feel better from just having been out working in the garden for a while. I really had let things go.

      The thyme really didn’t bloom this year. I noticed it was starting to several times but it never really did. At first I blamed a helpful bunny that I observed enjoyed it, but now I’m not sure. Your fragrant thyme must be a pleasure. I’d hoped mine would smell nice when I stepped around the paths–will have to search for another variety. Have a good day.

  2. paulinemulligan

    The plants always appreciate a cut back when they are stressed, so hopefully yours will be back to full bloom in September. It’s a shame that your Thyme isn’t living up to its name and smelling of lemons, but does it still taste good in your cooking?!

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Oh I hope you’re right. I was a little concerned it might be a bad time and would just lead to more dying back. Decided it was worth the risk though.

      I haven’t tried using the thyme in cooking–really should test it. I think this one is more ornamental. Thanks for your comments!

  3. Christina

    I think you’re correct to assume the thyme was mis-labeled but it looks a good tight ground cover so perhaps it doesn’t matter too much. I didn’t realise quickly enough that our weather was so much hotter and drier thsi year, strange how these things can surprise us. Christina

    1. pbmgarden Post author

      I am pleased with the look of the thyme this summer. It didn’t do that well during the winter (which was very mild), so had contemplated taking it out. So glad I didn’t. Will have to keep searching for solutions to year-round foliage/flowers in the meditation circle.

      Your weather has been so severe — no wonder you didn’t expect it. Hope you get some surprisingly good weather soon. Take care.


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