What is Creeping Thyme?
Creeping thyme is one of the few ground covers offering the promise of beauty, low-maintenance, and the ability to withstand light foot-traffic all at once. One great advantage of using creeping thyme is its quick spreading factor and ability to partition potted plants into small plugs. In this way, it allows a lovely distribution of all your assorted vegetation. Use creeping thyme between flagstones, around ponds, for covering up bare soil, or any outdoor surroundings of your choice. For diversity in your garden, place it in spots where vegetation beautifully spills over a rockery amidst any myriad of plants.
Varieties of Creeping Thyme
There are many types of creeping thyme and each one can serve a particular purpose. Listed below you will find a few of the most popular varieties applied in gardening and décor. However, a visit to your local nursery is sure to offer an even broader selection specific to your needs.
Woolly Thyme is quite velvety. Use it as a filler between pavers or along borders. It will grow slowly, reaching a maximum height of three inches. As with most ground cover, it will die out in patches if not watered evenly. Add Woolly Thyme to your garden or yard if you are allergic to bees as it sparsely flowers. On the rare occasion that flowers do pop up, they take on a pink tone.
Elfin Thyme is one of the smallest and slowest growing types of thyme. Try using Elfin Thyme for planting between stepping-stones or in other small spaces. Flowers of this variety appear dark pink and blossom closely together.
Mother of Thyme
You can use Mother of Thyme as an elegant edging of a pond or between walkway stones. Its fragrant leaves will provide a breath of fresh air as you meander through the yard. Little hairy leaves and pinkish-purple flowers are characteristic of this variety. Plant this herb in your garden as a pleasant and gorgeous thyme ground cover.
Creeping Pink Thyme
If you are looking for creeping thyme that has succulent leaves and grows flat, try Creeping Pink Thyme. This selection will grow quickly and is best under tall plants or roses. Its long stem makes it appealing for ornamental planting. Flowers of Creeping Pink Thyme are dark pink while the stem takes on a pinkish-lavender tone.
A fragrant creeping thyme used in many cooking recipes is Caraway Thyme. This variety will release the delightful scent of caraway seeds that can help ward away numerous harmful insects in your garden. Caraway Thyme has dark green leaves and reddish stems along with lavender to light pink flowers.
White Moss Thyme
White Moss Thyme is a very flat creeping thyme that will quickly spread in diameter. Beautiful little white flowers are usually the tallest feature on this variety reaching a maximum height of three inches. Plant White Moss Thyme in broad spaces; be sure to leave about eight inches of room between stepping-stones or other vegetation.
Thyme in History
Today creeping thyme flourishes in landscapes, enriches scenery, and brings fragrant delights to anyone who enjoys herbal gardening. However, appreciation for thyme goes far back in history. Shakespeare, Verlaine, Shenstone, and many other esteemed European poets used thyme in a number of their poems and literary works. Additionally, due to its medicinal and therapeutic qualities, many claim that it was one of the three herbs used to make the Virgin Mary's bed. Others relate its nomenclature to Ancient Greece, asserting that it was an adornment of Greek temple walls and used as purifying incense. Additionally, Greek athletes allegedly applied the essence of thyme in its oil-form on their arms and legs believing it stood for bravery, fervor, and strength.