Lofant is often called mint for its fragrant flowers and leaves, although its correct name is multi-grate. But you will most likely find seeds under the name lofant, agastache or mint.
Genus multicolor (Agastache) contains 22 species of plants and belongs to the family of lacustrine (Lamiaceae). Described in 1762 by the Dutch botanist Jan Gronovius from samples and records of the English plant collector John Clayton, who collected the flora of Virginia (the claytonia plant is named after him).
Almost all members of the genus grow on the North American continent, and only one in Asia. The name itself suggests that the plants grow well and give a lot of fragrant inflorescences. Latin Agastache comes from Greek words aganmeaning "set", and stachys - "ear", i.e. multi-grate. For fragrant leaves and flowers in English-speaking countries, the plant is called Giant Hyssop, but more often just mint.
These are herbaceous perennials with opposite toothed leaves on petioles. Vertical multi-flowered inflorescences crown the tops of straight tetrahedral stems. The flower cups are tubular-inverse-conical, deviated from the peduncle. The corolla is tubular, gradually expanding, emerging from the calyx, two-lipped - the upper lip is 2-lobed and straight, the lower lip is 3-lobed (the middle lobe is widest and curved, the lateral lobes are straight). In the flower there are 4 stamens, far protruding from the flower - the upper ones are longer, sticking out forward, the lower ones are straight ascending. Pistil with two stigmas. The fruit splits into 4 smooth nutlets with hairs at the top.
All polygrids are beautiful fragrant plants that smell of both leaves and flowers.
Multilayer, or mountain lofant (Agastache rupestris) - the most winter-hardy species, in nature it grows on cool mountain slopes in Arizona and New Mexico, at altitudes from 1500 to 2100 m above sea level. It belongs to the winter hardiness zone 4b-5a (up to -29оС). In temperate climates, it is usually grown as an annual.
Plant height - 50-90 cm. Recognizable by narrow grayish-green leaves up to 5 cm long, from linear-lanceolate to filiform, and purple calyx flowers. The flowers are salmon-orange, tubular, two-lipped, with a limb up to 4 mm in diameter. Inflorescences up to 25-30 cm tall, in appearance somewhat resemble red salvia. The leaves have a complex aroma dominated by anise notes. Blooms in the year of sowing, in July, and blooms until September.
On our sale you can find seeds of the variety:
Mountain mint "Flaming Sunset" - up to 60-70 cm tall, with red flowers and narrow leaves. The foliage has a strong pleasant lemon-mint aroma. Grown as an annual.
There are also pink and light purple varieties.
Multicolor, or Mexican lofant(Agastache mexicana), Mexican mint, naturally grows in the south of North America, in Mexico, at an altitude of 2000 m above sea level.
Branched stems, 0.5-150 cm tall. Leaves are oval-lanceolate, long-pointed at the apex, dentate along the edge. They have a strong licorice aroma. Blooms in late summer - early autumn. The winter hardiness of the plant is up to -23 ° C (zone 6). In winter, we usually die, leaving self-seeding, which rises in the spring. As a perennial (in the south), it is a short-lived plant that requires regular renewal.
The plant grows into beautiful lush clumps at the expense of underground stolons, but has weak competitiveness in relation to other plants.
The cultivars are marketed under the name Mexican Mint. There are varieties of different shades of bluish-lilac, pink, purple and white.
Multi-grate, or wrinkled lofant(Agastache rugosa) also known as Korean mint. The only species native to Asia. Sometimes it appears under the wrong name Lofant Tibetan.
Stems erect, 05, -1.5 m tall, thick, 7-8 mm thick, finely pubescent, glabrous at the base.Leaves are large, up to 11 cm long and 6 cm wide, cordate-ovate or oblong-lanceolate, long-pointed towards the apex, on petioles, glandular above. The calyx is purple or purple-red, the corolla is tubular, purple-blue, up to 8 mm long.
The stems have a licorice aroma, the leaves are peppermint and anise.
It is considered not a very ornamental plant, mainly its few varieties are grown in an annual culture, although the plants can winter in zone 4 and give little self-seeding. The plant is melliferous and medicinal.
Mnogogolosnik, or nettle-leaved lofant(Agastache urticifolia) grows in western North America. On the American continent, it is called horse mint.
This plant is characterized by a large height (up to 1.2-1.5 m), large, up to 8 cm long and 7 cm wide, widely spaced horizontally, spear-shaped or almost triangular, jagged along the edge, fragrant leaves, similar to nettle leaves. Inflorescences are dense spikelets from white and pink to purple.
This species belongs to the 7th zone of winter hardiness (up to -17 degrees). But in mild winters in the middle lane it can overwinter, gives self-seeding.
On sale you can find the varieties "White Butterfly" and "Blue Butterfly".
Multi-grate, or gray lofant(Agastache cana) naturally grows in mountainous areas in New Mexico and Texas, at an altitude of 1800 m above sea level.
The plant is 45-90 cm tall. Leaves are oval, pointed, compared with other species - small, up to 3.5 cm long and 1.2 cm wide, gray. The flowers range from pink to raspberry, with a sweet scent that has been likened to chewing gum, calling the plant Double bubblemint. Another name is Mosquito plant. It is believed that when rubbed, the leaves spread a smell that repels mosquitoes.
Variety "Heather Queen" is thermophilic, often falls out in winter, needs shelter. It has characteristic bluish foliage and pink flowers.
Fennel multi-grate, or fennel(Agastache foeniculum) - comes from North America (north of the USA, south of Canada). It practically disappeared in nature, but it is widely preserved in culture around the world. Its other name is anise lofant(Lophanthus anisatus), famous kitchen herb.
Outwardly, it is very similar to the wrinkled multi-grate. Stems are straight or branched, 50-150 cm tall. The leaves are quite large, up to 8-10 cm, lanceolate, with a jagged edge, have the aroma of anise, licorice and fennel. The flowers are pink-purple. Inflorescences are up to 7.5-15 cm long. Flowering begins in July and lasts until autumn.
Thermophilic, grown as an annual. Propagated by seeds, less often by cuttings. Ornamental and garden culture.
In the State Register of Breeding Achievements, 7 vegetable varieties of aniseed lofant are registered, used as spicy-aromatic (Astrakhan, Kuntsevsky Semko, Pamyat Kapeleva, Premier, Frant), among them 2 new varieties are Dachnik and Snezhok. (See below for culinary use.)
This type also includes the magnificent hybrid lofant "Golden Jubilee" - it is distinguished by a very spectacular, light green foliage and blue-lilac inflorescences. Grown from seeds, winters.
Multi-grate, or orange lofant(Agastacheaurantiaca) Sunset Yellow has yellow inflorescences and leaves similar to those of catnip. Compact plant up to 30 cm high. Awarded the prestigious Fleuroselect medal.
There is also the Apricot Sprite variety - with apricot-colored flowers, 20-25 cm high. The aroma is dominated by notes of mint. Winter hardiness - up to -23 ° C (zone 6).
Usually grown as an annual, it blooms from mid-summer. But it hibernates under cover and can be cultivated as a perennial plant.
The latter type on sale is usually called lofant barbers(Agastache barberi), but according to the new classification it is referred to as pale grate (Agastachepallida) and is considered one of its forms. Despite this, the assumption remains that the cultivated varieties are hybrids of two species of the grate - blood-red and mountain (Agastache coccinea x A. rupestris). The fact that they reproduce only vegetatively confirms this opinion.
Possesses tetrahedral stems, characteristic of the family, 60-90 cm tall. Leaves are opposite, serrated along the edge, bluish-green, smell like mint. Two-lipped flowers with a long tube are located in the axils of the upper leaves, forming a loose ear of false whorls up to 25-30 cm tall. The flowers have a sweet aroma of a mixture of anise and licorice and are readily visited by bees and butterflies. Flowering lasts a long time, from July to late summer.
The varieties are very attractive with bluish foliage and unusual flower colors.
The most famous variety Firebird - 50-75 cm high, with salmon-orange inflorescences.
There are similar varieties with salmon pink and coral inflorescences.
At home, the lofant barbera is found in areas with hot summers and low humidity. The plant belongs to the 6th zone of winter hardiness (up to -23оС). Therefore, in our climatic zone it is often grown as an annual or container plant, although it can winter under cover.
Growing rules in the open field are similar to any heat-loving plants. It is necessary to choose the sunniest, warmest and sheltered from the winds in the garden, preferably small southern slopes. The sun should illuminate the multicolor all day. At the same time, the plants are cold-resistant, withstand small frosts.
The soil should be light, well-drained. On heavy clayey plants damping out is inevitable. Soil acidity - from slightly acidic to slightly alkaline (pH 6.1-7.8).
Watering... Mnogogolosnik is a drought-resistant plant. However, it develops best with regular but moderate watering. Excess moisture stimulates rot.
Care behind the plants is minimal - loosening of the soil, protection from weeds. Mulching with sand or gravel is useful, which serves as additional protection against damping. Pruning stems for the winter is not carried out, so the plants winters better. It is better to remove them in the spring.
Mountainous, Mexican, fennel grategrass can be cut off after the first flowering, then a slight repetition of flowering is possible in the fall.
Wintering... Plants require dry wintering, so they are covered with a dry method - they are covered with a mixture of sand and ash (a glass of ash on a bucket of sand) and covered with a film, glassine or roofing material, leaving vents.
For safety reasons, we recommend taking cuttings in the fall and rooting, and then keeping them on the southern windowsill at a low temperature. In the spring, redraw again.
Diseases... Mnogogolosniki are not affected by pests and almost do not get sick. Powdery mildew may appear only at the end of summer. Simple Furacilin (2 tablets per 1 liter of water) will help get rid of it. You can spray often, the drug does not harm either the plant or people.
Mnogogolosniki are propagated by seeds (except for barbera lofant), division and cuttings.
You can sow in May in open ground (then the plants will bloom in August) or in March for seedlings for flowering in late June-early July. Seeds are germinated at a temperature of + 18 ... + 20 ° C, seedlings appear within 1-2 weeks. Flowering occurs in 3-3.5 months.
It is necessary to divide it in the spring, with the beginning of the regrowth of the shoots. Then young plants will have time to prepare for winter. So that they bloom earlier, apical cuttings 10-15 cm long are taken for reproduction. Rooting occurs within 3 weeks.
In the garden, the fragrant gravel will replenish the assortment of plants in fragrant and pharmacy gardens, gravel gardens. It is good to grow it near windows, porches, terraces, garden benches, playgrounds and other recreational areas. This is a great component for container compositions. The unusual color of the flowers attracts attention when growing the plant in curbs. By planting it along the path, you will feel the scent of the plant every time you touch it.
In flower beds, candles of lofant inflorescences give the necessary vertical, improve the geometry of the compositions.
Cut flowers will scent your home and keep well in water. It is also used as dried flowers.
Like mint, it is an excellent culinary herb. The leaves, fresh and dried, are used like mint. The flowers are also edible, contain a lot of nectar and have a sweetish taste, they are a good material for flower cuisine - decorating and flavoring salads, desserts, drinks, etc. For tea, take young leaves or leaf tips.
The Mexican multicolor is grown at home on an industrial scale for the production of essential oil, culinary and medicinal use. Tea from the leaves is useful for diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, nervous and cardiovascular diseases, restores healthy sleep and works as a tranquilizer. Essential oil is an effective antifungal agent. It is used, in particular, for processing grain during storage.
Fennel grate is a valuable melliferous plant, grown on the American continent in the fields to obtain the characteristic "anise" honey. It has medicinal properties - antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, fungicidal, but it is not used for medical purposes enough. Tea made from its leaves cures colds. In cooking, the leaves are used as a seasoning for meat and fish, jelly, compotes and baked goods.
The multi-grate anisee in cooking has found itself used as a seasoning, thanks to its special delicate aroma. Fresh green leaves of this plant can be safely added to various salads and soups, all kinds of potato and cabbage dishes. When fresh, the lofant will add an unusually sophisticated touch to cottage cheese, fish and sandwiches. Lofant goes well with almost any meat and fish dishes - baked, stewed or fried. It will perfectly transform the taste of any vegetable sauce. In dried form, it can be used in the same way as peppermint, it will be good for flavoring jams, desserts, puddings, teas, compotes, jelly and fruit drinks. As a spice, anise lofant is also used for canning vegetables.
Lofant seeds also have aroma and are used as a spice. They are quite small, about 2 mm. Suitable for consumption both raw and thermally processed.
- Aromatic herbal tea
- Summer herbal tea "Dachny"
- Red currant compote with herbs "Aroma of summer"