ANISE HYSSOP

The Anise hyssop,(Agastache foeniculum) is a beautiful additon to any garden. This perennial herb grows in bushy clumps, with upright branching stems, topped with spikes of lavender-blue flowers in the mid to late summer.

The flowers attract pollinating bees and other beneficial insects to your garden.

Both the leaves and the flowers are fragrant when fresh or dried, so they're a great addition to potpourri.

The leaves and tiny lavender-blue flowers of the smell and taste of anise, but its square stems and opposite leaves tell you it belongs to the mint family.

You can use the leaves either fresh or dried in tea and the flowers can be crumbled over fruit salads.

It will self-sow, it will spread and grow in new places from seeds it drops so you could pinch off most of the flowerheads before the small, black seeds mature and drop.

Plants grow to 2 to 4 feet tall and 1 ft. wide in Zones 4 to 9.

Anise hyssop is a handsome addition to the back of the perennial border. It goes nicely with other softly colored or white ornamentals such as companulas, or with herbs such as chives, oregano and thymes. GROWING Anise hyssop is easily grown from seed.

You can start indoors in a soil-less medium and keep under lights or in a window. You can also sprinkle outside in spring after frost or early fall.