BEE BALM - OSWEGO TEA
Eye catching blooms in June, offer delicious flowers & leaves for a historical tea, coined after this hardy perennial’s common name. Leaves of Monarda didyma were collected, before flowering, then dried and steeped for a Revolutionary Tea during the Boston Tea Party; also named “Oswego Tea.” Tea eases our sore throats and colds. Some taste good, others are "interesting."
All Bee Balms grow in full sun to afternoon shade, in normal soil, with extra organic matter to hold a lot of water, and plenty of room for roots (and tops) to spread. All are hardy to from Zone 5 through 8.
POWDERY MILDEW CURE: IF, on the chance you spot that whitish haze in July when the dew is thick and slow to dry off, here's all you need do: Recycle a gallon jug and funnel in 2 T. of "Baking Soda" and 2 T. vegetable oil. Fill it up with water. Shake and spray this all over plant. Repeat every week until mildew is destroyed! Shouldn't take more than 2 applications. Good for "Bee Balms, Zinnia, Phlox" and other plants susceptible to this relatively harmless, but unsightly mildew.