Scientific name: Thymus vulgaris

Thyme is very effective for stimulating the immune system, and directly strengthens the thymus gland, which itself produces a type of white blood cell (the disease fighting ones). It is said that ancient Romans and Greeks may have added it right into their baths, and with its antibacterial properties not only internally, but externally as well, they knew what they were doing!

Nutrients

  • Essential oil
    • Thymol
    • Cineole
    • Borneol
  • Flavonoids
  • Tannins

Health Benefits

  • Disinfecting properties: can be used externally and internally to fight infection, especially colds and sore throats
  • Antibacterial
  • Antiviral
  • Anti-fungal
  • Antiseptic
  • Rich in antioxidants
  • Thymus gland support
  • Immune system booster
  • Aids in digestion of fatty foods

Cooking Tips

When cooking with Thyme, add it early in the process so the flavor and oil has time to release and mix with your dish. It is great if you can use it fresh, but obviously the dried form is very common and works quite well also.

Pairings

  • Pasta sauces with peppers and eggplant
  • Vegetables esp. tomatoes and roasted potatoes
  • Fish esp. sea bass and mullet
  • Meats: thyme can be mixed with sage and rosemary (even better after marinating)
  • Stocks & stews

Quick Remedies

(consult a doctor if experiencing any serious conditions)

  • Coughs, chest issues: drink thyme tea with its cold-killing powers, as often as needed. Add a little honey for added nutrients and a nicer flavor

How to Grow

Planting

There are a few types of thyme, some creep while others grow straight up. The best for medicinal purposes are the common garden type (Thymus vulgaris) or lemon thyme (Thymus citriodorus).

Where do you live?

Thyme is a hardy perennial that grows well in many areas.

Put em in the ground

You can plant seeds right into the ground in late spring, or start them inside.

  • Well drained soil, slightly alkaline
  • Full sun to partial shade

Care

As the plant ages, it becomes woody. It’s beneficial to trim it a lot in the early spring before it begins to grow again.

  • Trim away early in the spring to keep your plant healthy

Harvest

  • Best harvested just before the plant blooms
  • Cut the stem right before a growth node, and in the morning if possible