Thyme
Thyme
Thyme
Thyme

Thyme

thymus

Thyme is a great way to help respiratory infections as well as fungal infections. Thyme as antibacterial properties and is a great digestive aid.

  • Plant type: Perennial
  • Other names: Garden Thyme, Common Thyme
  • Medicinal: Yes
  • Culinary: Yes
  • Ceremonial: No
  • Parts Used: Flowers, Leaves & Stems
  • Side Effects: Do not use in pregnancy (in large doses)
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About Thyme

Thyme has made many memories around different tables all around the world. Everything seems better with thyme. They are close relatives of the oregano and belong to the mint family Lamiaceae. Thyme is celebrated for its leaves that are green or variegated. Its leaves are elliptical-shaped and arranged oppositely on the stems. A dense sheath of hairs cover the leaves and along with oil glands. The thyme plant also possesses tiny lilac or pink-colored flowers that are brimmed with nectar.

Thyme is an evergreen, perennial shrub that cheered for culinary, medicinal, and ornamental purposes. This pungent herb compliments many sauces, soups, braises, fish, and meaty dishes.it also goes well with rice dishes, potatoes, vegetables, chowder, eggs, custard, and croquettes. The subtle dry aroma with a hint of the minty flavor grabs attention of taste buds and fits well with French, Italian, and Mediterranean dishes.

Apart from culinary uses, thyme is tailor-made to cater to different ailments. The active ingredient thymol is hailed for its benefits as it can treat cough, sore throat, bronchitis, gastritis, colic, diarrhea, flatulence, dyspraxia, internal parasitic infections, and so forth. The aromatic leaves of thyme are also used in manufacturing toothpaste to impart the minty flavor for treating halitosis.

Growing

Thyme desires to absorb the rays of full sun and a well-drained, neutral soil which can be chalky, loamy, or sandy. This handsome plant can be grown in both indoor and outdoor settings. Thyme does not require much water to prosper as it is highly drought-resistant. It needs water when the soil feels completely dry.

It seems a bit challenging to start thyme with seeds, so it is better to step up with cuttings and divisions. The cuttings should only be propagated when soil temperature 70°F i.e. two to three weeks before the last frost. In spring, the thyme plants can be fertilized with compost.

For garden bed thyme, its best companions are eggplant, Brussels, broccoli, tomatoes, and cabbage.

A secret to experiencing good growth, optimum flavor, and flowering, a liquid feed is supplied to thyme in summer. For attaining fresh new growth, thyme should be actively pruned with shears.

Thyme plant enters the flowering process upon the onset of spring and continues till summer. The attractive lilac flowers, packed with nectar, serves as an open invitation for the pollinating insects like a bee.

The pollination of thyme results in the formation of seed heads that are left to dry on the plant and get matured. These mature seeds then account for the propagation of the life cycle of thyme.

Harvesting

To experience the truly strong flavor of thyme, try summer harvest. Or else, thyme can be harvested all year round preferably before the flowering season.

Small sprigs of thyme are cut with aid of a sharp pair of scissors.

Thyme can be used both fresh and dried as it imparts the best of its flavor in both the forms.

Thyme can be oven-dried slowly for 24 hours at 212°F, or it can be air-dried until the leaves feel brittle to touch. The dried leaves are then stored in an airtight container to be used later for its signature essence and flavor.

Usage

Thyme, the strongest and driest of herbs, is widely used by people all around the world to gain a wise profit.

  • Tea - Fresh thyme sprigs are soaked in boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes and then strained to form thyme tea.
  • Tincture - Infuse fresh or dried chopped thyme leaves in grain alcohol for 4 to 6 weeks. Strain the liquid and place it in a dark and dry place.
  • Decoction - Dried thyme sprigs are steeped in hot boiled water for 5 to 10 minutes. The decoction is strained and can be enjoyed with the addition of natural sweetener.
  • Salve - Thyme oil is used to make thyme salve.
  • Syrup - fresh or dried thyme is simmered with white sugar and water to form thyme syrup.
  • Infused oil - Fresh or dried thyme is heated with oil for an hour. The oil is then strained and labeled as thyme oil.