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Where To Buy Elfin Thyme



This creeping thyme forms dense, slowly-spreading mats of tiny, rounded, emerald-green leaves. Closely-spaced lavender flowers in mid to late summer. It is great between stepping stones. Heavy foot traffic. Semi-woody plants have leaves that are small and fragrant. Short spikes of flowers occur during summer. Plants should be sheared frequently to maintain form and vigor. Requires well-drained soil, especially in winter. Evergreen. Attractive to butterflies. Plant on 6" centers. A Rare Roots favorite. Height/Spread:




where to buy elfin thyme



Flowers are borne upon the fragrant green to grayish blue foliage in summer and are extremely attractive to bees. Native to Europe, this little creeping variety of thyme is not only drought and heat tolerant, but deer and rabbit resistant, making it a lovely option for a natural garden landscape.


The slightly fuzzy or haired foliage of a growing elfin thyme works well among stepping stones, trailing through a rock garden and even as a forgiving substitute for grassy lawns. These little guys are adaptable to foot traffic, even fairly heavy foot traffic, and continue to spread while being tromped on, filling the air with their heavenly scent.


Growing elfin thyme is hardy to USDA hardiness zone 4 and should be planted in full sun and well draining soil, although it will also adapt to shadier areas. Shaded areas of growing elfin thyme will tend to clump more while sun exposure encourages the thyme to become more of a ground cover, spreading to a width of about 4 to 8 inches (10 to 20 cm.). When growing elfin thyme, the plants require at least five hours of sun per day and should be spaced 6 inches (15 cm.) apart.


Needing no fertilization or frequent watering and with an ability to withstand both hot, dry conditions or chilly weather, elfin creeping thyme plant is often a prized selection for xeriscaping, a landscaping plan that requires no irrigation.


Although the leaves are flavorful and aromatic, the tiny 1/8 to 3/8 inch (3 to 9 mm.) leaves are rather a pain to pick, so most people use other varieties of common thyme for their culinary herb uses and allow elfin thyme to play the role of an ornamental.


One from our 'Toe Tickler' collection, 'Elfin' is one of the best of the creeping aromatic evergreen thymes. In summer, pretty, tiny lavender flowers nearly cover the groundhugging mats of foliage that grow to about 1 or 2 inches in height.


This plant is an ideal groundcover for sunny, dry areas and is particularly well-suited for rock gardens and edging. It prefers well-draining soil and is drought-tolerant once established. 'Elfin' Thyme is also deer-resistant, making it a great choice for gardens in areas where deer are a problem.


Just like other thyme varieties, creeping thyme is edible with a flavor and aroma akin to mint when crushed or steeped for teas or tinctures. To harvest creeping thyme ground cover, either remove the leaves from the stems or dry them by snipping from the plant and hanging them upside down in a dark, well-aerated area. Harvest creeping thyme in the morning when the essential oils of the plant are at their peak.


Another creeping thyme fact is despite its enticing odor, growing creeping thyme ground cover is deer resistant, making it an ideal landscape candidate in areas frequented by them. Creeping thyme is also capable of withstanding tromping upon by rambunctious kids (making it kid resistant as well!), which makes it an exceptional planting choice anywhere that has frequent foot traffic.


As mentioned, growing creeping thyme is a simple process due to its compatibility in a variety of soils and light exposures. Although this ground cover prefers well-drained lightly textured soils, it will grow quite well in less than desirable medium and thrive from full sun to light shade environments.


Soil should be kept moist but not wet, as the growing creeping thyme plant is susceptible to root drowning and edema. The soil pH for growing creeping thyme plants should be neutral to slightly alkaline.


Creeping thyme ground cover can be propagated via stem cuttings or divisions and, of course, can be purchased from the local nursery as either established plantings or seeds. Cuttings from the creeping thyme plant should be taken in the early summer. Start seeds when growing creeping thyme indoors or they may be sown in the spring after the danger of frost has passed.


  • Creeping thyme is best used as a groundcover for small areas or to fill in spaces between stepping stones in sunny areas. It can be used to fill in crevices in retaining walls, and can also be grown in containers."}},"@type": "Question","name": "How long can creeping thyme live?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "If you're growing creeping thyme in a pot, the original plant usually has a life span of about three to five years. However, it's a prolific plant and self-seeder. After a few years, it may look woody and spindly, so you could decide to cut back its woody stems. Commonly, you'll find baby sprouts underneath.","@type": "Question","name": "Can creeping thyme grow indoors?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "Creeping thyme can grow indoors as long as you have a very bright window that gets at least six hours of direct sun streaming in; either that or a grow light should do.","@type": "Question","name": "What plants are similar to creeping thyme?","acceptedAnswer": "@type": "Answer","text": "Sedum requieni, also known as miniature stonecrop, is a small-leaved, low-growing filler or groundcover that often gets confused for thyme. You can immediately tell the difference between the two by breaking off a piece and smelling the leaves; stonecrop is not fragrant."]}]}] .icon-garden-review-1fill:#b1dede.icon-garden-review-2fill:none;stroke:#01727a;stroke-linecap:round;stroke-linejoin:round > buttonbuttonThe Spruce The Spruce's Instagram The Spruce's TikTok The Spruce's Pinterest The Spruce's Facebook NewslettersClose search formOpen search formSearch DecorRoom Design

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Learn tips for creating your most beautiful home and garden ever.Subscribe The Spruce's Instagram The Spruce's TikTok The Spruce's Pinterest The Spruce's Facebook About UsNewsletterPress and MediaContact UsEditorial GuidelinesGardeningPlants & FlowersPerennialsHow to Grow and Care for Creeping ThymeChoose From Several Different Types


Creeping thyme is best used as a groundcover for small areas or to fill in spaces between stepping stones in sunny areas. It can be used to fill in crevices in retaining walls, and can also be grown in containers.


If you're growing creeping thyme in a pot, the original plant usually has a life span of about three to five years. However, it's a prolific plant and self-seeder. After a few years, it may look woody and spindly, so you could decide to cut back its woody stems. Commonly, you'll find baby sprouts underneath.


Sedum requieni, also known as miniature stonecrop, is a small-leaved, low-growing filler or groundcover that often gets confused for thyme. You can immediately tell the difference between the two by breaking off a piece and smelling the leaves; stonecrop is not fragrant.


Elfin Thyme or Thymus serpyllum is a creeping aromatic semi-evergreen thyme that forms a dense mat. Great ground cover thyme. Elfin Thyme produces tiny lavender flowers in summer. Ideal to plant between bricks or paving stones.


Have no fear, Thymus praecox, aka creeping thyme, can handle a little foot traffic, releasing its sweet perfume in return, making it an excellent choice for planting in a walkway or between stepping stones!


In a garden setting, this species looks best planted in a walkway, in between stepping stones or pavers, as creeping thyme is tolerant of moderate foot traffic and releases a pleasant aroma when its leaves are lightly crushed.


Creeping thyme has blue-green elliptical leaves with fibrous hairs and delicate purple and white flowers. This plant typically grows no more than three inches tall, but it will grow up to six inches in favorable environments. This species of creeping thyme has showy blooms and will continue to expand outward until it reaches a barrier.


Elfin thyme also has blue-green elliptical leaves and flowers ranging from purple to white. The key difference is in the size of the blooms. Elfin thyme tends to have more visible foliage than creeping thyme, with a balanced ratio of flowers to leaves. Elfin thyme will also spread outward, though individual plants tend to stop between one and two feet from their base. 041b061a72


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