An essential oil is obtained from the leaves.Plants can be grown as a ground cover when spaced about 45cm apart each way.
The whole herb, and especially the flowering shoots, is mildly antiseptic, aromatic, carminative, digestive, mildly expectorant and stomachic. Taken internally, it is said to be a sovereign remedy for colic and a cure for flatulence, whilst it is also used to treat gastro-enteritis, cystitis, nausea, diarrhoea, bronchial congestion, sore throat and menstrual disorders. It should not be prescribed for pregnant women. A sprig of the plant, rubbed onto bee or wasp stings, brings instant relief[4, K]. The plant is harvested in the summer when in flower and can be used fresh or dried. The essential oil forms an ingredient in lotions for the scalp in cases of incipient baldness.An ointment made from the plant is used externally to relieve arthritic joints.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm taken at a node, July/August in a frame. Pot up in autumn and overwinter in a frame, planting out in late spring or early summer of the following year. A high percentage usually succeed. Cuttings of young wood, preferably with a heel, April/May in a frame. Plant out in the summer if the plants grow well, otherwise overwinter them in a cold frame and plant out in late spring or early summer of the following year[K].Division in early spring as growth commences. This works best if soil has been mounded up into the bottom 20cm of the plant early in the previous summer. Pot up the divisions and grow them on in a cold frame until they are established. Plant them out in the summer.
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Satureja montana. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
Winter savory is often grown in the garden as a culinary herb, there are some named varieties. The flavour is said to be more coarse than that of the annual savory (S. hortensis). The plants live for several years, but as they grow older they do not make so much new growth and so are best replaced every two years. A good bee plant. The leaves have an aromatic fragrance. A good companion plant to grow in the garden, it does especially well with onions and beans and helps to repel insect pests. The plant is said to inhibit the germination of certain seeds. Winter savory seeds can prevent the germination of nearby seeds.Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer.
Problems, pests & diseases
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- Clapham, Tootin and Warburg. Flora of the British Isles. Cambridge University Press (1962-00-00)
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