Thyme pruning

Champaign, IL(Zone 5b)

I have some thyme I planted last year, that has grown well, but the undersides are all brown and dead looking. The tops are green and flowering, but they're kinda leggy, with the underneath appearing to be dead. Should I prune the dead part off, leave it, or prune it all down low since its flowering? I use it for cooking, but it is mainly for aesthetic value, so whatever is healthiest for the plant is what I'd prefer to do.

Ayrshire Scotland, United Kingdom

Hi Kris, if it is the type of thyme we use for cooking as a herb, then they do grow very leggy if not pruned each year after flowering, that are like lots of European herbs, Lavender is the same, they dont re-shoot from the darker woody stems, I remember when my Dad used to grow it and it was not pruned, went all tall and leggy, he used to put a whole lode of compost into the center of the shrub and it sent out new rooted plants for him the following year, however I have never had that luck, so when mine goes like that, I really just take good cuttings from the old plant and start anew, you might have more luck than me IF you do a hard prune, but it is never really good as the shrub is inclined to grow from all the one side where there was pas a bit of new growth there anyway, wish I could be more positive for you, best to take some cuttings first in-case the pruning dont work out for you, after you prune it, you can also freeze all the tender 6 inch leave tips for adding to your cooking as and when you need it, I freeze mine in zipper bags and just remove what amount I require over the winter, Good luck. WeeNel.

Champaign, IL(Zone 5b)

Thanks weenel. I just planted them from seed last year....should they get this leggy so soon?


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