- Seed Needs, Wild Creeping Thyme (Thymus serpyllum) Twin Pack of 5,000 Seeds Each
- Creeping Thyme Seeds – Thymus Serpyllum Ground Cover Seed
- All About This Fuzzy Thyme Species
- Wooly Thyme Care
- Troubleshooting Wooly Thyme
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Seed Needs, Wild Creeping Thyme (Thymus serpyllum) Twin Pack of 5,000 Seeds Each
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- Quality Creeping Thyme seeds packaged by Seed Needs. Intended for the current and the following growing season. Packets are 3.25″ wide by 4.50″ tall and come with a full colored illustration on the front side, as well as detailed sowing instructions on the reverse.
- Wild Creeping Thyme is a low growing herb that produces masses of beautiful purple flowers. Each branch bares clusters of roughly 10 to 30 flowers atop slender stems. The plants are compact, forming stems that lay down to trail the ground beneath. Each plant grows to a mature height of only 6 to 12 inches tall.
- Wild Creeping Thyme is often used as a groundcover plant because of it’s fast, trailing growth habits. The plants can cover a large area with a few thousand seeds and will flower a few weeks later.
- Wild Creeping Thyme is popularly sown in rock gardens, along borders, fences & walkways, in containers & pots, or directly in the garden. This versatile groundcover also looks great when grown between pavers and stepping stones as well.
- All Creeping Thyme seeds sold by Seed Needs are Non-GMO based seed products and are intended for the current & the following growing season. All seeds are produced from open pollinated plants, stored in a temperature controlled facility and constantly moved out due to popularity.
PREPARING THE SITE
Thyme needs a sunny (about four hours a day or more), well drained spot to grow prolifically. Too little sun will result in a leggy stem instead of a stem that hugs the ground. To prepare the area it is necessary to remove all weeds and shape the ground. Thyme will not compete with weeds and, if the ground is mounded in spots, the end result will be mounds throughout your landscape. As the thyme knits together over the ground, it will help to keep annual weed seeds from getting light causing them to die. Weeds or grasses that run underground will be a huge problem if not dealt with before planting. Ground Cover Thyme will not keep these aggressive weeds from taking over and all weeds should continue to be removed from the thyme as it grows into new areas.
If soil is amended or graded in preparation, it will need to be watered several times so the soil settles. The soil should not be fluffy or the plants will “float” when they first go into the ground.
At this point it is also necessary to determine how the plants will be watered. Thyme is very shallowly rooted and can dry out quickly, especially when the little plants are first transplanted. Thymes should remain moist but not soggy for best growth. Over head sprinklers, drip or hand watering can be used, as long as the entire area receives water allowing the stems to root in moist soil.
Once you decide what you will use to water, then you need to decide how far apart the thymes will be planted. This is especially important if you are using a drip system. Two things to consider are economics (how much do you want to spend) and patience (how long are you willing to wait for the thyme to spread). One plant will cover everything if you wait long enough. Normally, we recommend the same spacing for plugs and pots. Flagstone Filler Thymes go in at about every 4-6 inches and Ground Cover Thymes go in about every 12 to 18 inches. The closer they are planted the faster the ground will be covered.
PLANTING AND MAINTAINING GROUND COVER THYMES
Most of our Thymes come in two sizes, a 3 inch pot and the 128 plug tray (which is 128 tiny plants in separate cells in a tray). These containers should be thoroughly watered on the day of planting. The ground should also be wet, but not soggy. Remove the plant carefully from its container. Avoid pulling on the top part of the plant and instead coax the plant from the bottom of the container so the roots are not damaged.
The hole in the ground should be just deep enough to bury the plant at the same level it was buried in in its original container. Firm the plants into their hole by gently tapping down the ground around the plant. Making good root contact with the soil around it will help the Thyme to take off faster.
Keeping plants moist, especially their root zone, after planting is extremely important. If the soil around the root ball is too dry it will wick water away from the plant causing dehydration of the root zone. It is necessary to keep the root balls moist until the roots start to grow into the soil around them. Mulching the bare ground when the Thyme is first planted helps to retain moisture and get the plants off to a successful start.
Mulching also helps to keep weeds at bay. A small particle mulch requires about a three-inch depth covering the bare soil around the new plants. The larger the mulch particles, the deeper the mulch should be. Avoid mulching right around the thyme. An airspace of about three-inches around the plant will keep it from being composted by the mulch. In six months or so, mulches may need to reapplied as they decompose and start to show bare dirt. The idea is to keep weed seeds from getting the light they need to sprout. The photos below show how the bare ground around the Pink Lemonade Thyme was kept mulched.
Creeping Thyme Seeds – Thymus Serpyllum Ground Cover Seed
USDA Zones: 4 – 9
Height: 8 inches
Bloom Season: Summer
Bloom Color: Pink
Growth Rate: Moderate
Environment: Full sun to partial shade
Foot Traffic: Light
Soil Type: Well-drained, pH 5.8 – 6.8
Deer Resistant: Yes
Average Germ Time: 14 – 21 days
Light Required: Yes
Depth: Do not cover the seed but press into the soil
Sowing Rate: Plant creeping thyme seed at 1/8 lb per 5,000 square feet
Moisture: Keep seeds moist until germination
Plant Spacing: 6 – 12 inches
Note: For detailed directions for indoor and outdoor planting, please
Care & Maintenance: Creeping Thyme
Creeping Thyme (Thymus Serpyllum) – Would you like a perennial ground cover plant that is an evergreen and very little maintenance? Look no further than Thymus Serpyllum seeds to grow a wonderfully hardy ground cover directly in the garden or border! Just 8 inches tall, Creeping Thyme ground cover plants are completely covered in 1/4 inch bells of carmine-pink for months on end. Butterflies love it and so will you! It is lemon-scented, with fine dark green foliage and slightly hairy leaves. Creeping Thyme will spread to 18 inches in width in no time at all.
Creeping Thyme does well in sunny beds, borders, rock gardens, and spilling over rock walls. Once it is established from ground cover seeds it is fairly drought tolerant. Creeping Thyme plants are tough enough to handle some light foot traffic, and both rabbits and deer do not bother it. Creeping Thyme self-sows readily, dropping it seeds after flowering season is over. This keeps a robust stand of Creeping Thyme ground cover thriving. In the fall, it can be sheared back to tidy it up.
Plant Creeping Thyme seeds directly outdoors after frost danger has passed. Prepare a seed bed, loosening the soil and weeding it. Scatter the Creeping Thyme ground cover seeds and press the seeds firmly into the soil. Keep the seeds consistently moist. If you want to get a jump start on the Creeping Thyme ground cover plants, sow the seed indoors 6 – 8 weeks before the last frost. Transplant the young seedling into the garden 6 – 12 inches apart.
Approximately 2,700,000 seeds per pound.
In rock gardens, wooly thyme reigns supreme. This tiny-leafed plant is a perfect ground cover variety, and can tolerate poor soils.
Growing thyme amongst your stepping stones is a great choice. While only tolerant of occasional foot traffic, it lets off a faint but beautiful aroma when stepped on. If planted out of the range of feet, it can be used as a culinary herb as well.
Let’s explore this edible landscaping plant in a bit more detail!
A perfect ground cover, wooly thyme looks great along stepping stones. Source: patrick_standish
|Scientific Name(s):||Thymus psuedolanguinosus, Thymus languinosus, Thymus praecox subsp. brittanicus|
|Common Name(s):||Wooly thyme, woolly thyme, wooly creeping thyme|
|Habit:||Creeping, low ground cover|
|Origin:||Believed to be European in origin|
|Zone:||Zones 5-8 ideal, 9 if in partial shade during excessive heat|
|Spread:||12-18″ per plant|
|Foliage:||Green with a silvery cast from the finely-haired tiny leaves|
|Bloom Time:||Late spring through mid-summer|
|Soil:||Well-draining, sandy OK. Does not have to be super-fertile.|
|Water:||Water when soil is dry in the top 3″, do not overwater.|
All About This Fuzzy Thyme Species
Fine white hairs give wooly thyme a distinctive silvery-green cast. Source: patrick_standish
Not as pungently-scented as other thymus species, wooly thyme is still wonderful. Tiny, hairy leaves and stems give it its common name. These wooly creeping thyme plants stay very low to the ground, forming a dense carpet.
In the late spring and early summer, miniature pinkish-purple flowers often form. Little flakes of color dapple this ground cover, looking like confetti sprinkled overtop. The leaves have a silvery hue because of their fine white hairs.
Light to moderate foot traffic is best for this particular species. It grows well alongside of footpaths or on gravel beds. Popular in rock gardens as well, it’ll provide a nice counterpoint to the larger rocks.
Like other members of the mint family, thyme can spread quickly once established. It’s tolerant of heat and drought conditions once it’s established, too!
The origins of this fuzzy thyme are indistinct, but are believed to be in Europe. At this point, it’s grown worldwide. It can be used culinarily as well as grown for the delicate foliage.
Naming Conventions For Thymus Psuedolanguinosus
Thymus psuedolanuginosus has many different names. Let’s begin with the botanical names.
Once called Thymus languinosus, it was later adapted to Thymus psuedolanguinosus. It has a synonym of Thymus praecox subsp. brittanicus.
Commonly called woolly thyme, it’s occasionally referred to as wooly creeping thyme. The latter is mostly due to its affiliation with the praecox species. But it’s true that wooly thymes do creep!
Wooly Thyme Care
Wooly thyme flowers from mid-to-late spring through midsummer. Source: KingsbraeGarden
With this species, like other thymes, very little care is actually required. Once in place, it’ll basically handle itself, growing not much more than 3-4″ tall and a foot and a half across per plant.
But for best growth, we’ve provided a cheat sheet. Here’s what you need to know to provide optimal conditions for your creeping wooly thymes!
Light & Temperature
This sun loving plant handles full sun conditions like a pro. While it will grow in partial sun conditions, there still needs to be abundant ambient light.
Heat has little to no effect on wooly thyme as long as it has enough water. If drought conditions set in, its growth will slow somewhat but it will still manage to survive. However, temperatures that are consistently over 100 degrees Fahrenheit can cause wilting. A little afternoon shade in excessively hot climates may be desired.
Water & Humidity
As said above, this fuzzy thyme is reasonably drought-tolerant. In ideal conditions, it should be watered when the top 3″ of soil gets dry. If it seems to be wilting in the heat of the day, it’s a sure sign it needs some water.
Avoid over-watering to prevent potential disease risks. In rainy seasons, don’t provide supplemental water. If the soil holds moisture well, the plant acts as its own living mulch once established. When it’s still young, adding additional mulch is a benefit, but leave about 3″ of space between the plant and the mulch.
Thymes in general are tolerant of humid conditions. Be on the lookout for powdery mildew if the humidity is regularly over 50%.
Generally tolerant of poor soil conditions, thymes are shallow-rooted. They want soil which they can grasp onto, but not soil that’s too loose. When preparing the area, remove all weeds to prevent competition for water and space.
Your soil should be well-draining, possibly a bit on the sandy side. Too clay-like and your thyme won’t easily spread. If it’s too loose and fluffy, your plant may “float” on the surface if the soil gets muddy in the rain. Avoid severe compaction, but make sure it’s dense enough to hold your plant in place.
The pH range of your soil should be neutral, and within in the 5.8-7.5 range. It prefers the 6-6.5 range but will tolerant slightly-acidic and slightly-alkaline conditions.
Overly-fertile soil is not great for thymes. They’ll lose much of their fragrance and culinary flavor if overfed!
To prevent this, use a half-strength liquid fertilizer once in the spring. You shouldn’t need to fertilize again until the next spring.
If you’d prefer to avoid fertilizers, and many do for thymes, a side-dressing of leafy compost is just fine. There’s enough nutrients in the compost to provide everything your plants will need.
Propagation of your thyme can be done from seed, cuttings, or layering techniques.
Seed is usually the most common when first starting a ground cover of thyme. Many plugs can be started at the same time, then planted out at the same stage of growth.
Once the thyme plants are established, you can propagate more from your plants. Look at the thyme and find a stem node where leaves attach. That’s a good place to take a cutting from.
Remove the lower leaves, keeping the node intact. Gently press the thyme cutting into moistened potting soil. It will develop roots.
You can also layer the thyme into place while it’s still attached to the parent plant. Look for those nodes, and gently remove leaves around the node. Then press it into the ground at that point, fully covering the node area. It will develop new roots at that point.
As the thyme flowers dry out in the late summer, your thyme can start to look leggy. If it’s a ground cover, you can mow it with a lawn mower set to 3.5″ to even it up. Alternately, you can hand-prune to remove unkempt bits.
Woolly thyme can be pruned at any time of year for culinary use. Snipping off a few stems on a regular basis will encourage your plant to continue to spread.
As a general rule, this type of thyme stays about 3-4″ off the ground at maximum height. It can spread to about a foot and a half wide per plant.
Troubleshooting Wooly Thyme
Like many herbs, the thyme family is immune to a lot of problems. But here’s a short list of the most commonly-experienced issues that might arise.
If the soil is too wet, thyme may begin to have problems. The roots can start to suffocate from too little airflow. This can cause the plant’s foliage to start to die back. If it continues, root rot may set in. Be sure the soil is well-draining to prevent this problem.
Poor lighting can also pose a hazard. If your thyme’s getting too little sunlight, it can begin to yellow or brown. Be sure it receives a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight daily.
If you want your thyme to be consistently green and soft, regular trimming is required. This encourages a new flush of soft, green growth.
If the center of an older woolly thyme plant appears to be going brown, that’s not abnormal. While it’s a perennial, it can go woody at the center of the plant over time. Pruning may delay this, but if the center of your plant goes brown, replace it with a new plant for ground covers.
This thyme is often used around flagstones or stepping stones in gardens. It’s tolerant of light to medium foot traffic. But if it begins to grow across the stepping stones, prune that portion back. The grinding of the stem against the stone can create damaged patches that allow disease to set in.
Very few pests bother thyme, and for that matter a number of other herbs. The oils in the leaves tend to deter them.
Red spider mites may live in and around your thyme. A light spraying of neem oil should dissuade them from taking up residence.
Most other pests won’t even bother, but you might find spiders living in or around your plants. The creeping wooly thyme provides a great shelter for ground-dwelling arachnids.
Most diseases won’t impact your plants, and for that you should be thankful! But there are a couple which might appear.
While it’s relatively rare, powdery mildew can move in. Occasional spraying of neem oil should prevent this problem. This is usually most prevalent during warm, rainy conditions. Good airflow in your thyme bed will also help prevent its development.
Various soil-based fungal diseases like phytophthora can attack the shallow roots. This usually only happens if the plant is stressed from overwatering. To avoid root rot conditions, ensure the plant’s in well-draining soil. Lower-fertility soil or sandier soil works just fine for your thyme!
Whether you’re growing it as a replacement for your lawn or as a culinary herb, you will love this plant. There is always time for some silvery thyme!
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