Monarda didyma is a gorgeous plant that would suit just about any garden, naturalized or formal. Commonly referred to as scarlet beebalm, M. didyma is an aromatic herbaceous perennial that is well named, for its bright red blossoms are a definitive favorite of bees, not to mention highly attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies.
Scarlet beebalm, as with the others in the Monarda family, has a lovely, delicate fragrance that might be described as a minty orange tea. (How’s that for a combination? If you are a fan of Earl Grey tea, this is your plant.) Another benefit of this plant is that it is noted to be juglone-tolerant, and prefers rich, moist soils, so would be a vibrant addition to a garden situated under Black Walnut trees.
Monarda didyma is not quite native to New England. We decided to grow and offer this species because it is such an important plant for pollinators and hummingbirds.
Fun Fact: Beebalm was originally so named not for its attraction of bees, which it does of course, but because people would crush the leaves and apply the poultice to bee-stings, using the plant of bees as a balm.
Source: grown from seed originally from Minnesota. Prairie Moon Nursery.
Monarda didyma (Scarlet bee balm)
SIZE AND POT INFORMATION: More details coming in May type: herbaceous perennial sun needs: full sun, part sun/part shade water needs: average, moist height: 3' plant spacing: 1 per square foot bloom time: July, August bloom color: red
good plant companions
Black-eyed Susan, dense blazing star, little bluestem, big bluestem
salt tolerant. Some salt exposure should not be fatal to the plant but some leaf burning may still occur. deer resistant (please note that does not mean deer proof)