General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Plant Height: Normally 2 to 3 feet in height but may grow to 6 feet.
Plant Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Leaves: Deciduous
Fragrant
Fruit: Other: Tan to brown pods.
Fruiting Time: Late summer or early fall
Fall
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Red
Bloom Size: 1"-2"
Flower Time: Late spring or early summer
Summer
Late summer or early fall
Other: Deadhead flowers to prolong bloom period.
Underground structures: Rhizome
Uses: Culinary Herb
Medicinal Herb
Cut Flower
Will Naturalize
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Butterflies
Hummingbirds
Resistances: Humidity tolerant
Propagation: Seeds: Self fertile
Needs specific temperature: 60ºF - 70ºF.
Days to germinate: 2 to 4 weeks.
Depth to plant seed: Shallowly sow, lightly covering with a thin layer of soil.
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Cuttings: Root
Division
Stolons and runners
Pollinators: Bees

Image
Common names
  • Bee Balm
  • Firecracker Plant
  • Bergamot
  • Oswego Tea
  • Beebalm

Photo Gallery

Date: June
credit: Joe Schneid
Location: Aberdeen, NC (S. Sycamore street)
Date: June 3, 2023
Bee Balm # 473; RAB p. 913, 164-23-1; AG p. 413, 82-19-1; MBG, "G
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date: July
3 feet tall and prolific
Photo by Maxmom98
Location: Northeastern, Texas
Date: 2019-06-16
#pollination
Location: Ed Burton, NE Wisconsin
Date: 2007-06-30
Location: Aberdeen, NC (S. Sycamore street)
Date: June 3, 2023
Bee Balm # 473; RAB p. 913, 164-23-1; AG p. 413, 82-19-1; MBG, "G
Location: Northeastern, Texas
Date: 2019-05-29
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2011-06-19
Location: Ingleside. Illinois
Date: 2022-07-14
Location: Ed Burton, NE Wisconsin
Date: 2010-06-28
Location: Fairfax, VA | July, 2022
Date: 2022-07-05
Location: Ingleside. Illinois
Date: 2021-07-08

Date: 2015-07-09
Location: My garden
Date: 2018-05-21
Photo by janwax
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
Date: 2020-07-24
Two Types of Bee Balm (Monarda didyma) Red, growing next to Wild
Location: all photos from my garden
Date: 2007-02-24
Location: all photos from my garden
Date: 2014-06-28
Location: Western Kentucky
Date: Summer 2011
Bee balm
Location: Philo, California
Date: 2014-06-29
Location: Fairfax, VA | July, 2022
Date: 2022-06-17

Date: 2016-07-02
Photo by Maxmom98

Date: c. 1913
illustration from Britton and Brown's 'An illustrated Flora of th
Location: Aberdeen, NC (S. Sycamore street)
Date: June 3, 2023
Bee Balm # 473; RAB p. 913, 164-23-1; AG p. 413, 82-19-1; MBG, "G
Location: Woodbridge , Va
Date: 6/10/15
emerging bloom
Photo by drdawg
Location: Indiana zone 5
Date: 2014-06-24
Location: Ingleside. Illinois
Date: 2022-05-18
Location: Northeastern, Texas
Date: 2019-03-22
Location: Brownstown Pennsylvania
Date: 2015-07-09
#Pollination
Location: Ingleside. Illinois
Date: 2022-04-13
Location: Enterprise, Al. 36330
Date: 2014-06-20
Location: all photos from my garden
Date: 2008-03-13
Location: all photos from my garden
Date: 2007-02-24
Location: all photos from my garden
Date: 2014-06-28

Date: 2013-06-14
Location: Coenstoga, PA
Date: 2015-08-08
Lots of steady rain made for a very good year for bee balm!
Location: Plano, TX
Date: 2008-03-01
Location: Tennessee
courtesy Sunlight Gardens, www.sunlightgardens.com
Location: Enterprise, Al. 36330
Date: 2014-06-11

Courtesy Gardens in the Wood of Grassy Creek
  • Uploaded by vic
Location: Cheyenne Wyoming
Date: 2011-08-20
Location: all photos from my garden
Date: 2007-02-24
Location: Brownstown Pennsylvania
Date: 2016-07-03

Date: 2013-06-14
Location: zone 8 Lake City, Fl.
Date: 2014-11-09
Location: zone 8 Lake City, Fl.
Date: 2014-11-09

Photo Courtesy of Prairie Nursery. Used with Permission
  • Uploaded by Joy
Location: Beautiful Tennessee/Clingmans Dome
Date: July 15, 2015
pretty red
Photo by gardengus
Location: Enterprise, Al. 36330
Date: 2014-06-20

Courtesy Outsidepride
  • Uploaded by vic
Location: Plano, TX
Date: 2009-06-08
Location: central Illinois
Date: 6-16-11
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2011-06-19

Date: 2013-06-14
Photo by drdawg
Photo by drdawg
Location: Denver Metro CO
Date: 2015-09-14
Bought a "bee balm" herb during early spring from BigBox store, b
Location: Mississippi
Date: 2015-05-01
Location: zone 8 Lake City, Fl.
Date: 2014-11-09
Photo by virginiarose
Location: Quad Cities Botanical Garden, Rock Island, Il.
Date: 2011-07-02

Photo Courtesy of Prairie Nursery. Used with Permission
  • Uploaded by Joy

Credit NPS
Location: Plano, TX
Date: 2009-06-02
Location: central Illinois
Date: 2011-06-15
actually pre-bloom
Location: Plano, TX
Date: 2013-11-05
Location: South Carolina 
Date: June
Location: central Illinois
Date: 6-3-12
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Comments:
  • Posted by threegardeners (Brockville, Ontario, Canada - Zone 5a) on Jan 31, 2012 4:50 PM concerning plant:
    The red Monarda didyma is the most prolific grower in my Zone 5 garden. It isn't prolific to the point of being invasive, but if left alone it will gladly fill a large area over a few years.
    Super easy to rip out though because of its very shallow root system.
    Transplants like a dream, yank out a hunk and barely shove it in some soil and it will grow.
    Prefers full sun (Canada) but will grow nicely, although not as prolifically or as tall, in partial shade.
    Not fussy about soil. My gardens are sandy.
    Doesn't need any extra watering up here either although we do get rained on at least once a week.
    Leaves will get mildew during years of high rainfalls or if the nights are too damp and cool. This can be alleviated by thinning the patch to allow airflow between the stems.
  • Posted by Sharon (Calvert City, KY - Zone 7a) on Nov 16, 2011 1:57 AM concerning plant:
    Monarda is native to eastern North America. It's endangered in some areas.

    It is of the mint family, evidenced by its square stems and the strong scent of its leaves. The Native Americans at one time made tea from the dried leaves of Monarda didyma and shared it with the settlers, who went on to use it as a substitute when imported tea became scarce after the Boston Tea Party.

    Some groups thought the tea effective in treating colds and sore throats while others steamed the plant and inhaled the fumes to clear sinuses.

    The plant is not recommended for its medicinal use today, but the tea from the leaves is still popular in some areas.
  • Posted by Catmint20906 (PNW WA half hour south of Olympia - Zone 8a) on Aug 2, 2014 7:52 PM concerning plant:
    According to NPIN, Monarda didyma has special value to native and bumble bees, and is attractive to hummingbirds.
Plant Events from our members
piksihk On June 4, 2018 Bloomed
HW finally blooms
piksihk On May 9, 2015 Transplanted
Seedfork On April 11, 2012 Obtained plant
Buds and Blossoms Nursery
flaflwrgrl On October 10, 2014 Potted up
flaflwrgrl On October 7, 2014 Obtained plant
Rec'd division in trade.
thequeen770 On March 10, 2017 Plant emerged
New growth showing in entire pot ( which is still planted in the front flowerbed
MrsBinWY On June 11, 2020 Transplanted
1 in front of old stump in back yard
MrsBinWY On May 2, 2020 Seeds sown
seeds from ishareflowers
WebTucker On June 3, 2023 Bloomed
» Post your own event for this plant

Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Humming Bird by prabhisetty Nov 5, 2016 6:18 PM 2

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