A native American plant, long favoured in local healing traditions, licorice mint has uses similar to many of its relatives in the Lamiaceae family – opening and uplifting, used to aid digestion and support the body’s defences against seasonal infections, to mention a few.
Also known as anise hyssop, this stunning aromatic perennial does indeed taste like a combination of anise, hyssop, licorice and mint. It is a distinct species though and there is no mistaking the plant with its spikes of stunning purple flowers – one of our favourites and much loved by a wide variety of pollinating insects.
Grown from seed, licorice mint starts flowering in mid to late summer of its first year. It becomes taller and more abundant in its second year, reaching a full height of around 120cm. It can grow in full sunshine or partial shade and prefers well-drained sandy or loamy soil. Harvest the leaves for a delicious cup of tea.