I planted catnip (aka catmint) a couple of years ago. Popular in landscaping, it produces small purple flowers essentially from spring to fall. As it turns out, the deer leave it alone while demolishing hostess and every other supposedly deer-resistant ornamental. The cat loves it.
I have since planted a bunch more, and this is why:
- It looks nice. A compact, rounded shrub, it does not seem inclined to spread and forms an orderly procession right where it is planted.
- It is indestructible. While deer eat everything and summer storms alternate with high heat, the plants just keep on blooming.
- This is the biggest one, and least expected. Pollinators love it! I see bumble bees (the big, slow bees), mason bees, only a few honeybees, and they never bother us. I see occasional butterflies. This spring, there is an ongoing patronage from a pair of ruby-throated hummingbirds. Just the other day, I saw a pair of goldfinches (I think they were eating pollen) hopping from stem to stem for their lunch. I have also seen an indigo bunting I hadn’t seen before, and a little brown and white hummingbird. And counting…