This is yet another of my favorite herbs. We have a wild variety flowering that is lavender at the farm. I wish I would have taken a picture before it went to seed. It is growing to the point of needing to be weeded out of the bed.
The parts of this plant which are used are the leaves. You can boil them to make a tea which is very flavorful and medicinally good for fevers, stomach aches and a good nights sleep.
The smell is incredible and very much like bergamot (which is really a citrus). Anyone who has tried earl grey tea knows what bergamot smells like.
In the garden this plant is a giant. It grows to 3-4 feet and attracts bees and hummingbirds galore!! At the nursery I had to take the hose out and spray ours off so customers could get a pot of monarda in spite of the bees. They just will not leave these plants alone when in flower!
It seems to like it damp and sunny in the summer (hard to manage here in South Ga). It also likes rich soil. You can get a second flowering if you prune it back gently after the first flush of flowers before it sets seed. In the fall prune it back to about an inch of the ground.
I am growing some in pots for next year. I have heard these make great container plants. We will see.USES FOR BERGAMOT
Facial steams and herb baths
mixed in with salad greens
I have to admit, as much as I love this plant, she is one I have not really gotten into using as much as my other plants. I am on a mission this year to really get to know my Monarda.