Melissa officinalis (Lemon Balm)

Melissa officinalis

Lemon balm

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Flowers
Flowers

Plant does not flower in January

Plant does not flower in February

Plant does not flower in March

Plant does not flower in April

Plant does not flower in May

Plant does flower in June

Plant does flower in July

Plant does flower in August

Plant does not flower in September

Plant does not flower in October

Plant does not flower in November

Plant does not flower in December

  • Botanical name: Melissa officinalis
  • Common name: Lemon balm
  • Family: Lamiaceae
  • Plant Type: Herb, Perennial, Deciduous
Flower colour:

White

Foliage colour:

Green

Lemon balm, Melissa officinalis, is a robust herbaceous perennial grown for its aromatic foliage, which can be used in desserts and to make a revitalising herbal tea. In the summer months it produces small white flowers that are a hit with bees. Use a small handful of fresh leaves, then steep and strain to make tea that can be enjoyed hot or iced.

Advertisement

Like mint, it’s a particularly rampant grower, so is best confined to a raised bed or container where it can’t spread too much.

Advertisement

For best results, grow Melissa officinalis in moist, well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade. Cut back after flowering to promote fresh growth and prevent seeds from forming.

How to grow Melissa officinalis

  • Plant size

    100cm height

    50cm spread

  • Aspect

    South facing, west facing

  • Sun exposure: Dappled shade, full sun, partial shade
  • Hardiness: Hardy
  • Soil type: Clay / heavy / moist / well drained / light / sandy

Plant calendar

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Sow
Sow

Do not Sow in January

Do not Sow in February

Do not Sow in March

Do not Sow in April

Do Sow in May

Do Sow in June

Do Sow in July

Do Sow in August

Do not Sow in September

Do not Sow in October

Do not Sow in November

Do not Sow in December

Plant
Plant

Do not Plant in January

Do not Plant in February

Do Plant in March

Do Plant in April

Do Plant in May

Do not Plant in June

Do not Plant in July

Do not Plant in August

Do not Plant in September

Do not Plant in October

Do not Plant in November

Do not Plant in December

Flowers
Flowers

Plant does not flower in January

Plant does not flower in February

Plant does not flower in March

Plant does not flower in April

Plant does not flower in May

Plant does flower in June

Plant does flower in July

Plant does flower in August

Plant does not flower in September

Plant does not flower in October

Plant does not flower in November

Plant does not flower in December

Take cuttings
Take cuttings

Do not Take cuttings in January

Do not Take cuttings in February

Do not Take cuttings in March

Do Take cuttings in April

Do Take cuttings in May

Do Take cuttings in June

Do Take cuttings in July

Do Take cuttings in August

Do not Take cuttings in September

Do not Take cuttings in October

Do not Take cuttings in November

Do not Take cuttings in December

Melissa officinalis and wildlife

Melissa officinalis is known for attracting bees. It has nectar/pollen rich flowers.

Attractive to Bees

Does not attract Beneficial insects

Does not attract Birds

Does not attract Butterflies​/​Moths

Does not attract Other pollinators

Is Melissa officinalis poisonous?

Melissa officinalis has no toxic effects reported.

No reported toxicity to:

No reported toxicity to Birds

No reported toxicity to Cats

No reported toxicity to Dogs

No reported toxicity to Horses

No reported toxicity to Livestock

No reported toxicity to People

Plants that go well with Melissa officinalis