Thymus serpyllum: Creeping Thyme

Thymus serpyllum, known by the common names of Breckland thyme, wild thyme or creeping thyme, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family Lamiaceae, native to most of Europe and North Africa. It is a low, usually prostrate subshrub growing to 2 cm [1 in] tall with creeping stems up to 10 cm [4 in] long. The oval evergreen leaves are 3–8 mm long. The strongly scented flowers are either lilac, pink-purple, magenta, or a rare white, all 4–6 mm long and produced in clusters. The hardy plant tolerates some pedestrian traffic and produces fragrances ranging from heavily herbal to lightly lemon, depending on the variety.

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Wild thyme is a creeping dwarf evergreen shrub with woody stems and a taproot. The leaves are in opposite pairs, nearly stalkless, with linear elliptic round-tipped blades. The plant sends up erect flowering shoots in summer. The usually pink or mauve flowers have a tube-like calyx and an irregular straight-tubed, hairy corolla. The upper petal is notched and the lower one is larger than the two lateral petals and has three flattened lobes which form a lip. Each flower has four projecting stamens and two fused carpels.

Photo: AtlantaGA [20060402]

Source: Wikipedia

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