Anise Hyssop/Hummingbird Mint
Sometimes it's hard to be thankful for the relentless heat we get in July and August in the Rogue Valley but having an Agastache in your garden will definitely help you learn to appreciate it! This late blooming perennial thrives in our heat and drought. Agastaches attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds with their tubular flowers. They thrive in well-drained soil and can even handle gritty or nutrient poor soil.
The key is getting them through our wet winters- so plant them high, add gravel or grit to the hole, and mulch with a 1/4" gravel to keep moisture from the crown.
The other imperative is to not prune Agastaches back until spring, when you see new growth emerging from the base. The woody stems will help it survive the rainy winter; it is usually too much water, not cold, that will do them in. Placing them in full sun, even in the winter months will also help.
A deep soak every couple of weeks will get them through the summer months but once mine are established I don't water them all summer. Another bonus is their licorice, spicy scent usually repels deer. They pair great with ornamental grasses or wide leaf perennials like Euphorbia and complement the Mediterranean plants like Rosemary and Lavender.
There are new hybrids coming out all the time - in vibrant shades of orange, pink, yellow, magenta, and purple - but the sunset tones are my favorite. They can vary in height but are usually at least 18"-36" tall and wide. Check out the nursery for the latest finds.
Some of our favorites of the moment:
Agastache rupestris - lovely peachy orange tones with a lavender calyx and fine licorice-mint scented foliage, one of the most reliable and cold hardy. 1' to 3' tall, 1' to 2' wide.
Agastache 'Blue Boa' -
This is a big one; 2-3' tall. Showy deep blue-violet spikes contrast beautifully with the rich, green foliage. Long blooming, excellent for late season fall color.
Agastache "Kudos Yellow' - A smaller (2' by 2') mounding variety with bright yellow flowers. Like all Agastaches, Kudos Yellow thrives in well-drained soils and attracts lots of hummingbirds and other pollinators!