When growing thyme from the seeds you’ve got a couple of choices. One of those choices is growing it directly from cuttings. When growing thyme from seed, scatter your seeds (the seeds when growing thyme are very small, so just sow a multitude of seed at a time onto your pot or growing tray) over your prepared growing medium and lightly cover with thick, sterilized growing media of choice. Just don’t overdo it Thin layers of thyme will float through the air, getting all of the sun and moisture they can, and some of these seeds may not germinate. So, just sow them over the course of a couple of weeks or so.
You can also grow seedlings directly from cuttings. Cut a piece of root from a larger plant, no more than an inch wide and cut it so it lies fairly flat on the ground. When you’ve got a bunch of young seedlings growing, put these cuttings in a half inch mason jar and cover with water. They should stay pretty wet until about the third week of their life. If they’ve had time, feed them a couple of tablespoonfuls of liquid seaweed once a day, because seaweed is high in potassium and is a natural bug repellant.
In either case, after about the third week of the growing season, remove your plants and repot them into small pots. The pots should be about four inches deep, but if you’re planting seedlings, you can trim the topsoil to reduce the depth of the pot. Fill the pots with water and bring to room temperature. Over the next couple of weeks, make sure that the pots are well watered and that the bottom of the pot and the rim of the pot are well dampened with water. Thyme likes a moist atmosphere.
When it’s springtime, there are many types of perennial herbs for you to choose from: marjoram, basil, mint, Rosemary, oregano, sage, chives and tarragon. All of these will do well as growing additions to your garden as long as you give them enough sunlight, moist soil and a growing medium that are rich in nutrients. Thyme, too, will flourish in the sunlight, but it needs a deeper soil that has more nutrients. It’s best to place the thyme plant in the sunny area during the day and in the shade at night.
Soil that has been packed too tightly, compacted, or is full of silt won’t support a plant like thyme. It thrives best in a well-composted loam or other soil with lots of air and water. A Mediterranean gardener who wants to grow a plant like this one will have to till the soil a little – a process that takes some time to accomplish. Thyme can be successfully grown in most areas, even those where soil drainage is poor. It will tolerate drought, heat, and cold better than most annuals.
In growing thyme from seed, the Mediterranean herb also comes with a companion plant: oregano. The two herbs grow well together, but their annual flowering period doesn’t reach that of marjoram, mint, Rosemary or tarragon. Their leaves don’t reach that long either, but their flavorful oils can linger in the air long after other herbs have gone to seed and fallen to the ground. In the spring they combine beautifully with the blossoms of basil, which is why they make such a great complement to the perennial garden.
When growing thyme from seed, you can leave the plant on its own to grow up to four feet tall. If you want to try the method of propagating it as opposed to growing it in the garden, you can divide and replant it as soon as you can. The larger, livelier branches can be divided and put into baskets and hung from clothes lines, tree branches, fences with stakes. Because of the large number of stems and leaves it takes to support itself, you may need to provide extra support for it as it grows. Be careful not to damage the roots by over-supporting it.
To encourage new growth and reduce watering needs, you should dig a hole that is as wide as the height of the thyme plant in the first year. This would be a minimum of six inches deep. A clear plastic container or plastic pot would be perfect for this. Place the roots of the plant into the hole and cover it with the growth hormone-free growing medium, and place it in a sunny and well-drained area for two to three months. After the first growing season, remove the plant from the container or pot and plant it in a sunny window with good drainage.