Basil Thyme (Acinos arvensis)

Annual/Perennial
A. thymoides. Calamintha acinos. Satureia acinos.
Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Basil Thyme
Acinos arvensis
Labiatae

The plant makes a good ground cover[244].

  • Medicinal Use

    Basil thyme was a great favourite of the ancient herbalists, though it is little used medicinally at present[4]. The herb is diuretic, odontalgic, rubefacient and stomachic[4, 61, 238]. The essential oil has been applied externally as a rubefacient, whilst one drop of it put into a decayed tooth is said to alleviate the pain[4]. The plant has also been added to bath water, especially for children, and is said to be a strengthener and nerve soother[4].

    The flowering plant is harvested in the summer and is normally used fresh in infusions[238].

  • Edible Use

    The flowering tops are used as a flavouring[4, 177, 183] and in salads[238]. Said to be similar to thyme in odour but milder and more pleasant[183]. The plant is only faintly aromatic and does not really make a very good substitute for thyme[238, K].

  • Cautionary Notes

    None known

Cultivation & Habitat

Seed – sow early spring in a cold frame. If you have sufficient seed then you could try sowing in situ in April or May. Germination should take place within a month. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in the summer. Division in spring. Basal cuttings in late spring. Very easy[K].
Succeeds in any well-drained soil[244], though it prefers a light well-drained dry soil in full sun[1, 238]. Prefers sandy and alkaline growing conditions[238]. Dislikes shade. A very hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to at least -15¡c[238]. A short-lived perennial, but the plants usually self-sow when they are growing in a suitable position[238].
Europe, including Britain, from Scandanavia to the Mediterranean and east to W. Asia.

Become ungovernable, break the chains of the matrix; grow and forage your own food and medicine.

*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.