Hysope Hyssop Hisopo Hysop
Crop Rotation Group :Lamiaceae
Soil :dry well drained soil
Position : Full sun or partial shade
Frost tolerant :
Helps: brassicas, cabbage, grapes; yssop is a good companion plant to cabbage, partly because it will lure away the Cabbage White butterfly, and has also been found to improve the yield from grapevines if planted along the rows, particularly if the terrain is rocky or sandy.
Attracts: honeybees, butterflies
Repels: Cabbage moth larvae, Cabbage Butterflies
Sow and Plant :Sow indoors March to April or sow directly outdoors in May to June.
Sowing Indoors:Sow in separate 7cm (3in) pots containing well drained soil and cover with 5mm (1/4in) of compost. Seeds will germinate in 14 to 21 days. Transplant outdoors after the last frosts. Set plants 30 to 45cm (12 to 18in) apart. Keep well watered till established.
Sowing Direct: Sow in drills, then thin the plants to 45cm (18in) spacing. Keep well watered till established. Prior to planting work in plenty of organic matter, such as compost, or aged animal manure. It is also helpful to add a light application of organic fertiliser to the planting hole. Hyssop grows equally well in containers.
Hyssop should be grown in full sun on well drained soil, and will benefit from occasional clipping. Pruning to the first set of leaves after flowering will create a more compact plant and better flowering in the following year. It is a short-lived plant, and will need to be replaced every few years.
Harvesting :Use the youngest leaves and stems as needed. Cut in the morning after the dew has dried for optimal flavour.
Do not wash the leaves or aromatic oils will be lost. Hyssop is best used fresh but can also be stored frozen in plastic bags or dried.
To dry, tie the cuttings in small bunches and hang upside down in a well-ventilated, dark room. Hyssop leaves should dry out in about six days, any longer and they will begin to discolour and lose their flavour. The dried leaves are stored in clean, dry, labelled airtight containers, and will keep for 12 to 18 months. When dried, remove the leaves from the stems and store whole. Crush or grind just before use.
Time to harvest: days
Notes :Stimulates growth of grapes