I love fragrant plants. There is nothing nicer then burying your head into a bunch of flowers and taking a deep breath. This year I have sown and planted a lot of flowers such as Sweet Peas, Freesia, Gladioli and Sunflowers. Other flowers have just come up from a sowing last year like Calendula and Cosmos.
More flowers have been sown but for now there are two that seem to do very well in the conditions I gave them: Sweet William, about which I wrote a post a few weeks ago and now Blue Giant Hyssop (Agastache Foeniculum) – which in Dutch is also known as the liquorice plant.
Blue Giant Hyssop or Anise Hyssop is a perennial plant with square stems instead of the usual round ones. It is a bushy, branched plant with long bluey purple candle-like flowers. When brushed the plant gives off a strong aniseed scent and it’s a big favorite of butterflies and bees, which is one of the reasons I bought the seeds in the first place.
Blue Giant Hyssop belongs to the mint family (Limiaceae) and the leaves do resemble mint leaves.I found out that Native Americans used the plant for medicinal purposes, to cure a coughs, fevers and wounds. The leaves are wonderful in teas or used dry in potpourri. A friend of mine suggested using the leaves to infuse vodka to get liquorice vodka which is sold in some clubs and bars in the Netherlands (not made with herbs). For now though I am using the flowers to make a fragrant bouquet in combination with Sweet Peas, Cornflowers and Cosmos. Pretty as a picture!