Hyssop is a bushy perennial herb with spiky flowers and scented leaves, used in ancient times for medicinal and aromatic purposes. Give it sun and well-drained soil.
Sun or part shade
Front of the border
Hyssop: A Field Guide
Hyssop was once the first herb people thought of growing—used since ancient times for both medicinal and aromatic purposes. The bushy perennial herb’s spiky flowers and scented leaves earned several mentions in the Bible, perhaps most famously invoked in Psalm 57 as a means to banishing transgression: “Cleanse me with hyssop, that I may be pure; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.”
Nowadays, however, Hyssopus officinalis has a lower profile and is not as widely grown as its cousin mint or culinary herbs such as parsley, sage, and rosemary. But hyssop deserves a spot in your herb garden, where it will attract pollinators, send up spiky purple flowers, and provide you with leaves to make soothing tisanes. As a companion plant in a vegetable garden, its strongly scented leaves can repel aphids. And with a compact, bushy habit, hyssop also is a lovely, front-of-the-border ornamental plant for a flower bed.