Perennial. Native to North America. The common variety has shaggy heads of scarlet flowers in late summer, but there are pink & purple forms as well. Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa) has lavender flowers and has the most medicinal properties.
Harvest leaves in Spring / Summer when the flowers appear. Pick flowers when open. Use fresh or dry.
Monarda didyma, Labiatae family
Culinary Uses: Add flower petals to salads. Infuse the leaves to make a tea similar to Earl Grey, or add fresh leaves to lemonade.
Medicinal Uses: Bea Balm Tea relieves nausea, flatulence & insomnia. The steam can be inhaled for bronchial ailments or sore throats. The dried flowers keep their colour, so are good in Potpourris
Cultural Requirements: Best in Full Sun in rich, light soil.
Perennial. Native to North America.