Thinking of adding a low-maintenance perennial to your pollinator garden? We love the look and sweet aroma of Bee Balm (botanical name: Monarda) this North American native species is known to attract bees, butterflies and hummingbirds!
Also referred to as wild bergamot, Bee balm is a member of the mint family and is sometimes used in herbal teas, salads and garnishes. Plus, its beautiful blooms and height make for an excellent background plant in any flower bed! Bee Balm’s old-fashioned beauty can be found with red, pink, white or purple blooms.
Planting and Maintenance for Bee Balm:
Light: Full Sun. Can be grown in partial sun, but won’t be as happy.
Soil: Slightly acidic to neutral loamy soil
Bloom Time: Summer
Water: Keep the soil evenly moist throughout the growing season- ensure daily watering especially on hot summer days when first planted.
Fertilizer: Bee balm doesn’t require frequent or heavy fertilizer. Sprinkling a small amount of all-purpose garden fertilizer, around each plant in early spring is sufficient.
Size & Spacing: 2-4′ tall | Space plants 18-24 inches apart
- Pick bee balm flowers frequently to encourage flower production.
- In the spring remove spent flowers to promote a new flush of blooms.
- In the late fall, cut the plant down to just a few inches tall.
- Add mulch around the plants to preserve the moisture in the soil and control weeds.
- Divide bee balm every 2 -3 years in the spring to ensure its vigour.