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A picture of a Summer Savory

Summer Savory

Satureja hortensis

Also known as

Savory, Summer Thyme

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy

6a

USDA zone

-23°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

60cm

Max

20cm

30cm

Min

15cm

Flowering

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images

A photo of Summer Savory
A photo of Summer Savory
A photo of Summer Savory
A photo of Summer Savory
A photo of Summer Savory

Overview

Satureja hortensis is famous for its peppery-thyme flavoured leaves. It is a multi-branched annual plant from the Lamiaceae family, with narrow dark green leaves and very pretty spikes of white to purple flowers. Commonly known as Summer Savory or Summer Thyme. It is more delicately flavoured than the perennial Winter Savoury (S. montana). Also called "the bean herb", because it both enhances the flavour of broad beans, and it reduces flatulence. International Herb Association's 'Herb of the Year 2015'.

Common problems

This is a tough plant, with no notabe pest or disease problems. Rather, it is known to keep pests away with its strong scent.

    Companion plants

    A photo of Common Bean

    Common Bean

    Phaseolus vulgaris

    A photo of Broad Bean

    Broad Bean

    Vicia faba

    Harvesting

    Harvest leaves throughout the growing season, as soon as plant is about 15cm high. Pinching back will give you continuous harvests. For distiling oils, leaves should be harvested just when flowering starts. To harvest seeds, wait for flowers to mature and seeds are brown. The entire plant may be cut and dried.

    Propagation

    Seed

    Sow in situ in late Spring; Spacing 40 - 50 cm; Sowing depth 4mm; Germination time 7 - 14 days, thin out to 15cm apart. They do not transplant well.

    Special Features

    Attracts useful insects

    Butterflies and Bees

    Repels harmful insects

    It discourages cabbage moths, Mexican bean beetles, sweet potato weevil and black aphids.

    Crop rotation

    Light feeder

    Pot plant

    Will flourish in a well-drained pot, feed lightly and do not over water. The plant has thin, weak stems that need support.

    Uses

    Culinary, soil conditioner, insect repellant Culinary, soil conditioner, insect repellant and aphrodisiac.

    Medicinal

    Traditionally believed to cure several ailments, esp beestings. A "cure-it-all" according to dr N Culpeper (1600's). Said to increase sex drive when an infusion is massaged onto the lower back.

    Edible

    Gives a delicious taste to a wide variety of food, esp beans, soup, stew, meat and vegetables. Can be used fresh, cooked or preserved in vinegar. Tea with savory is said to control diarrhea.