Monday, June 29, 2009

Red Bee Balm

Bee Balm
Monarda didyma 'Jacob Cline'
(mo-NAR-da) (DID-ee-muh)
Synonyms: Oswego Tea, Bergamot, Firecracker Plant, ‘Jacob Kline

Normally Bee Balm isn’t my favorite perennial but this year it has turned out nicely and is putting on quite a show. This variety gets tall (48 inches) and spreads rapidly (mint family) but it is easy enough to keep in check and doesn’t seem to need staking. You can pull out the spreading parts and replant them or chuck them.

The flower is really red and I never noticed the red bract like leaves that have preceded the flowers. They are almost as nice as the flowers themselves. ‘Jacob Cline’ can start looking a little ratty towards the end of the season and I often cut it down completely at that time. Same thing if it gets the powdery mildew. The cutting doesn’t seem to hurt it. It seems to grow in part shade also although it flowers less. This flower definitely attracts hummingbirds.

Here is a link to a Wikipedia article on Monarda . It has some interesting information on the uses of Bee Balm.

After a long absence I am doing Ruby Tuesday again this week. I just haven’t had the right shot at the right time. See more Ruby Tuesday at Work of the Poet.


fishing guy said...

DFP: That certainly is an interesting flower.

His Unfailing Love said...

Ilike your flowers too, I just knew the name of the flower here.
Thanks for visiting too.

Day4plus said...

I have always liked Monarda, from it wonderful scent and square stems to the perky jester cap flower. Nace capture. MB

Reader Wil said...

It's a very beautiful flower and so are your photos!Thanks for the visit.

DrillerAA09 said...

Really nice photos. Very well done indeed. Happy RT.

Carletta said...

Love both of these shots!
I'm not familiar with either of these but I'm liking what I see - especially the Monarda.
Thanks for the info to go along with your lovely images.

My post is here: Carletta’s Captures.

Mary said...

You selected a most interesting flower for your post. You really captured it well.

SouthLakesMom said...

You're probably too hard on yourself in selecting shots -- but the ones you do share are exquisite!

Happily Retired Gal said...

Both blossoms are unique and lovely ... perfect for Ruby Tuesday ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

Bergamot, bee balm,
Oswego tea—
Whatever your name is
You’re the herb for me!

My Ruby Tuesday

joey said...

I find this a lovely flower to photograph, more stunning to study up close. Happy summer, Chris.