Horehound
Ballota vulgare

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ballota (bal-LOT-uh) (Info)
Species: vulgare (vul-GAIR-ee) (Info)
Synonym:Marrubium vulgare

Category:

Herbs

Height:

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Spacing:

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Danger:

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Foliage:

Grown for foliage

Herbaceous

Other details:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Non-patented

Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From herbaceous stem cuttings

Allow cut surface to callous over before planting

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; direct sow after last frost

By simple layering

By serpentine layering

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Regional

This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Hereford, Arizona

Jerome, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona

Prescott Valley, Arizona

Bonsall, California

Menifee, California

Santa Ana, California

Florence, Colorado

Osborne, Kansas

Gold Hill, Oregon

Clarksville, Tennessee

Belton, Texas

De Leon, Texas

Santo, Texas

Wytheville, Virginia

Great Cacapon, West Virginia

show all

Gardeners' Notes:

2
positives
3
neutrals
0
negatives
RatingContent
Positive

On Aug 5, 2012, eatmyplants from Comanche county, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Horehound grows wild in certain pockets in my area. Most of what I've seen is growing under trees in fairly deep shade. It is very drought tolerant. At this time, the ground is bone dry and it is flourishing. Horehound is easily transplanted by just digging up the roots and replanting (with soil or no soil, doesn't matter, just keep damp until replanting). Cut off all the above ground growth and it will put out all new growth in a fairly short time.

Neutral

On Feb 7, 2010, boocat13 from Coquille, OR wrote:

I want white horehound, Marrubium vulgare, for cough candy-making. Ballota vulgare is BLACK horehound, not used in cough candies. These plants are not synonyms. Very annoying.

Neutral

On Dec 27, 2006, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Horehound Ballota vulgare is naturalized in Texas and other States and is considered an invasive plant in Texas.

Positive

On Sep 3, 2002, Weezingreens from Seward, AK (Zone 3b) wrote:

Horehound is a fascinating plant with an unusual gauze-like texture under the leaves and along the stems. The dark green leaves are savoyed (deeply veined). It can produce a small white flower in summer. Cut back for renewed growth.

In my youth, I recall my father buying horehound candy which was a brown sugar-coated lozenge with a distinctive taste. Whether used in candy or in tea, it is a home remedy for coughs and colds.

Neutral

On May 6, 2002, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Leaves are very beautiful white overlaying green. Very fleshy. Plant can grow very big, with stems layering when they touch ground. Suitable for groundcover. Tolerates some foot traffic.

Flowers are white, insignificant.