Because the seeds are so tiny, thyme seeds should be sown very shallowly or pressed into the soil with a fine layer sprinkled on top. Better to plant seed in a nursery bed where more attention can be paid to the tiny plants. This will also enable the more valuable garden space to be used for an earlier-maturing crop.
In the seedbed, plant thyme seeds in early spring with the drills 4 to 6 inches apart with 5 or 6 seeds per inch. If planting in volume, mix sand with the seed to prevent over-planting. Some farmers use as much as 4 parts sand to one part seed.
Thyme plants should be planted no closer than 8 inches apart. Ten inches is preferred but one plant per square foot is optimal.
Young, growing thyme plants should be set out in the garden or field in June or July, preferably in damp ground or just prior to a rain shower.
Thyme can be propagated by dividing the roots (should be done in April) and from seed. The finest plants are produced when grown from seed.
Harvest alternating plants in late August or early September. Harvest plants from alternating rows around three weeks later and the final crop of thyme should be harvested in October. If harvesting for drying, it’s best to harvest thyme just as they come into flower.
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