Anise Hyssop

Anise Hyssop

agastache foeniculum

Anise Hyssop helps to break up any congestion that may come with a cold or flu. It will also help with digestion due to it's bitter flavor.

  • Plant type: Perennial
  • Other names: Lavender Giant Hyssop
  • Medicinal: Yes
  • Culinary: Yes
  • Ceremonial: No
  • Parts Used: Flowering tops, leaves, stems, & flower
  • Side Effects: None
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About Anise Hyssop

Anise hyssop is a herbaceous perennial that comes from the mint family and is usually recognized by its tall beautiful flowers. It is also known as giant hyssop. The International Herb Association recently declared Anise as ‘Herb of the year’ which adds more vibrancy to its already extraordinary profile.

Anise hyssop is characterized by tinged purple flowers with broad dark green leaves that add beauty to the garden. Its flowers emit sweet odor with a vague hint of basil, like that of French tarragon. The aromatic flowers and foliage off this alluring plant are edible and impart sweet licorice-like taste to the buds.

Due to its glowing similarity with French tarragon, its leaves are employed as a substitute and infused in syrups or brewed into tea. On the other hand, its alluring flowers highly compliment the desserts, confections, and salads.

Saving its culinary uses, anise hyssop does not back down when it comes to rendering the medicinal uses. Its leaves serve as a potent digestive tonic to stimulate healthy digestion, relieve flatulence, and ease diarrhea. The leaves also come in handy during the season of sniffs and flu where it keeps the cough and cold at bay. The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory property of this heroic plant makes it shine among the crowds of thousands and gives us the idea behind its success story that earned it the title of ‘Herb of the year (2019)’

Growing

Anise hyssop is an easy growing plant that does not reflect much hassle. All it needs is a partly shaded region with moist yet well-drained and slightly acidic to neutral soil (6.0 to 7.0 pH) to grow. The plant can either be initiated with broadcasted seeds or divisions.

For witnessing a vibrant growth, the seeds are stratified in a cold moist environment. Anise hyssop is often labeled as short-lived but its aggressive root system and vigorous self-seeding property make it immortal.

The seeds of Anise hyssop are broadcasted in early fall to have them sprouted by the spring. For propagation via divisions, the process is kick-started in early spring or late fall. The only risk in propagation via cuttings is the production of infertile or seedless plants that are obviously of no use in the long run. 

Anise hyssop plant manifest robust growth in both indoor and outdoor settings provided the fact that the favorable growing conditions are supplied to it in a controlled manner.

Anise hyssop is an apparently short-lived perennial that germinates quickly within 1-4 weeks upon broadcast. The seeds then sprout and soon a bunch of true leaves emerges.

The bloom time of the plant depends on the time of its germination. It can either bloom in early fall or summer. The attractive lavender-colored flowers along with its alluring scent invite the pollinating agents to serve the cause of pollination.

Soon the seeds start appearing that are quite small but are easily detachable which gives the plant a reason to be a vigorous self-propagator.

Harvesting

The flowers of Anise Hyssop are harvested when they are amidst their bloom time whereas the leaves are harvested just before the blooming phase strikes, on a warm sunny day, preferably in the morning without any traces of dew.

The leaves and flowers of Anise Hyssop are highly prized in the market so they are harvested zealously.

The flowers are preferred fresh as they complement the salads. Now, the leaves can either be used fresh or dried in a well-ventilated space to be stored in a jar for preserving its sweet flavor.

Usage

Anise hyssop is employed in various forms to let its magical spells spread the positivity it keeps hidden in it.

  • Tincture -  Infuse freshly chopped anise hyssop leaves and flowers in grain alcohol for 4 to 6 weeks. Strain the liquid and place it in a dark and dry place.
  • Tea - Fresh or dried anise hyssop leaves, flowers, or stems can be steeped in boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes. The liquid can then be strained to be enjoyed as anise hyssop tea.
  • Decoction - Dried leaves can be simmered in water for the preparation of anise hyssop decoction.
  • Salve - Crushed leaves and stems of anise hyssop can be transformed into a salve.
  • Syrup - Water, sugar, and anise hyssop leaves are rolled to a 3-minute boil. The liquid is then strained with perfection to call it anise hyssop syrup.