Bee Balm, Beebalm, Bergamot, Firecracker Plant, Horsemint, Mountain Mint, Oswego Tea 'Gardenview Scarlet'

Monarda didyma

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Monarda (mo-NAR-da) (Info)
Species: didyma (DID-ee-muh) (Info)
Cultivar: Gardenview Scarlet




Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Water Requirements:

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


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

Sun to Partial Shade


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall




Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From herbaceous stem cuttings

By tip layering

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


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

Castro Valley, California

Sacramento, California

Dallas, Georgia

Lilburn, Georgia

Oak Park, Illinois

Newburgh, Indiana

Earlham, Iowa

Dry Ridge, Kentucky

Hebron, Kentucky

Kingfield, Maine

Baltimore, Maryland

Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

Detroit, Michigan

Saint Paul, Minnesota

Wayzata, Minnesota

Zimmerman, Minnesota

Plattsmouth, Nebraska

Winchester, New Hampshire

Averill Park, New York

East Moriches, New York

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Fargo, North Dakota

Bucyrus, Ohio

Findlay, Ohio

Lancaster, Ohio

Strongsville, Ohio

Boyertown, Pennsylvania

Morristown, Tennessee

Austin, Texas

Murchison, Texas

Essex Junction, Vermont

Great Falls, Virginia

Hampton, Virginia

Virginia Beach, Virginia

Kalama, Washington

Spokane, Washington

Wheeling, West Virginia

Black Earth, Wisconsin

Cameron, Wisconsin

Waterloo, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Aug 23, 2013, mluthercox from Baltimore, MD wrote:

The leaves of this plant make the best tea for treating severe stomach pain. It is absolutely the best I have ever used; it takes the pain away within minutes.
Would like to have a supply of it on hand. I don't garden. Does anyone have any?


On Jul 3, 2013, BlackEarthSquid from Black Earth, WI wrote:

Last year I planted "Gardenview Scarlet" and "Blue Stocking" Monarda next to each other. This year, the Scarlet has spread like mad - I'm going to have to divide it already. And the Blue Stocking is gone. I guess you could say this is a vigorous cultivar! No problems with mold here, my Monarda is in a sunny, well-ventilated garden patch.


On Mar 6, 2008, joan30157 from Dallas, GA (Zone 7b) wrote:

Love this plant. It does spread quickly. The hummingbirds adore this plant and are very territorial. There is a problem with mold in our hot humid summers but if cut back to the ground after blooming it will bloom again and the new growth has never been effected. We spend alot of evenings watching the hummingbirds in the beebalm.


On Jul 3, 2007, rparrny from East Moriches, NY wrote:

I planted this several years ago in an area I wanted to naturalize. Everything got choked out except the bee balm which bloomed every year! This year I will transplant it to an area where I can enjoy it more. Nothing lifts your spirits more than seeing that red crown bloom! It is also used medicinally.


On Feb 7, 2007, Bellisgirl from Spokane, WA wrote:

Ive had this plant for over five years now. I moved it twice before finding the perfect spot. Beautiful scarlet flowers that are a hummingbird magnet. Mine doesnt spread too much. It had a bad problem with mildew the first few years, but is now quite healthy. I found that it helps to keep the leaves as dry as posible, by watering only the roots, and to pluck off any sickly leaves at the first sign of mildew.


On Jun 16, 2005, ambersgarden from Boyertown, PA wrote:

This spreads nicely... I have it in a corner of the garden just for the hummingbirds, so the more flowers the longer the hummers visit!

The japanese beetles attacked the plants and flowers last year, hopefully with my bag a bug, I can keep them away this year.


On Apr 9, 2005, kerry_in_ky from Dry Ridge, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

I planted some of this last year. It does spread fairly quickly and contrary to the advertisement does get powdery mildew here in Kentucky (though not as bad as the lilacs I have).
With both of these issues I still had a hard time rating this one. It definately has a place in my garden, the flowers are striking and the bees love it.


On Jan 18, 2005, lynnsherbs from Zimmerman, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

Here in Minnesota, I find that it is not invasive, although you do need to keep a real handle on it and remove any stray runners that you see and remove any stalks that fall to the ground for it will root and spread any way that it can! I've used it to make jelly, dried the flowers for arrangements and just plain enjoyed it. It always draws hummingbirds, butterflies and bees. Give it enough moisture and an area where the air can move around it and mildew won't be a problem.


On Apr 21, 2004, Magazinewriter from Bloomfield Hills, MI wrote:

Very very very invasive!!
I would rate it "positive" except that you have to divide it all summer long. Maybe I should replace my grass with this kind of bee balm!!
A big clump of red bee balm is a wonder to behold. It is so red you can see it from blocks away.
I did not have much success with purple bee balm. Red is the way to go.
Other people have trouble with mildew; I have found that, if you keep spaces in between the flowers, you decrease the chances for mildew.
My bee balm grows about 5 feet tall but does not need staking. I divide it every year and give it to everyone I know. You can divide it any old way. You cannot kill it.


On Jan 13, 2004, hotlanta from Lilburn, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

The blossoms do attract butterflies, bees, and humming birds, but the leaves get a general, dusty mold on them that make the plants unattractive.


On Feb 1, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

Marketed as being resistant to mildew. The flower color is very good -- bright red.