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Thyme Materia Medica




Grow | Harvest | Make with Thyme

I know a bank where the wild thyme grows

-Shakespeare


I D E N T I F I C A T I O N

Thymus vulgaris Lamiaceae

Shrubby

Oval, flat, aromatic, paired green leaves

Pale purple whorl flowers that grow on spikes Square, thin branching stem G R O W Perennial Hardy to zone 5 Light, well drained soil Full to part sun In spring, trim overwintered woody stems before new growth begins Pollinator friendly Excellent companion plant Use for edging a bed, between pathways and pavers or even to replace grass H A R V E S T Summer through fall Midmorning Before flowering Use scissors to cut stems Trim regularly throughout season D R Y Remove dried leaves Use stems for fire starters the feet should have more of the acquaintance of earth, and know more of flowers, freshness, cool brooks, wild thyme, and salt sand than does anything else about us. ... It is only the entirely unshod that have lively feet. - Alice Meynell P R O P E R T I E S Warm I Dry I Stimulating M A K E Tea: sore throat, cough, fever, indigestion, headache, menstrual, mental or physical exhaustion Oil: massage, arthritic areas, candida, wounds, bruises Steam: cold and flu, all skin types Wash/Compress: wounds, swelling, bruises, stimulating bath, dark or flakey hair Gargle: sore throat, cough, bad breath, infected gums Culinary: preservative, citrus notes, digestion, meats, soup, cheese, onion soup, bouquet garni, za'atar For educational purposes only. Not intended for medical advice. Always consult your physician.





Folklore & Fables of Thyme


Bring the buds of the hazel-copse, Where two lovers kissed at noon; Bring the crushed red wild-thyme tops Where they murmured under the moon.... -Alfred Noyes


Thymus vulgaris

Common names include garden thyme and common thyme

Thymus comes from the Greek word "thymos" or "thumos" which is said to mean "smoke", "incense", "to fumigate", and/or "invigorating odor" due to its use as incense in temples and churches.


Ruled by Venus and the signs of Taurus and Cancer, its element is Air and its energy is feminine. In floriography, or Victorian Language of Flowers, Thyme signifies "activity" Happiness is a roadside flower growing on the highways of usefulness; plucked, it shall wither in thy hand; passed by, it is fragrance to thy spirit. Trample the thyme beneath thy feet; be useful, be happy. - Martin Farquhar Tupper Symbolism includes:

Courage

Bravery

Protection

Ambition

Healing

Clairvoyance

Whimsy


Its representation of courage and strength comes from the practice of giving soldiers sprigs of Thyme before they went to war. Alternatively, it may be embroidered with a bumble bee flying over it. It was shown as a sign of respect and as a fond farewell given the soldier may not return home.


Revered by ancient Greeks, their phrase "to smell of thyme" meant great praise, especially of grace and elegance. In their mythology, Thyme is said to have come from the tears of Helen of Troy due to her worry of the Trojan wars.


A common mummification herb due to its preservation properties, Thyme was also a common funeral herb and laid in caskets to bless the soul's travel to the next life. Likewise, it was used to commune with the departed.

Steeped in fairy folk lore, Thyme can be used to:

*attract them by burning incense or growing it in the garden

*see them by putting sprigs on closed eyes while sleeping on a faerie hill

*put on a windowsill to invite them to cross the threshold.

Thyme can be used under the pillow or in a dream pillow to ward off nightmares.


Marie Antoinette and Ninon de l'Enclos adored Thyme in their baths.

Romans believed that eating it during a meal would protect them from poison.