Plant as Allies and Friends

Natalie sitting by the lemon balm

Plants as Allies and Friends –
medicinal and culinary herbs at Lokahi Garden Sanctuary

Today’s Focus—-Lemon Balm, Melissa officinalis

From the beginning of time, plants and herbs have been allies and support to us fellow human beings. If you are interested in partnering with plants, especially some common medicinal and culinary herbs, please join me on this blog on a regular basis to begin the journey of using and enjoying the rich bounty
of useful plants for mind, body and spirit that are grown at Lokahi Garden Sanctuary.

Chose one that you like and decide to pursue getting to know it better.

Today, I’ll talk about my favorite…Lemon Balm “Melissa officinalis”. You can see me with my teapot and cup next to the lemon balm plant getting ready to pick some for my daily tea.

The soft lemony fragrance of lemon balm, the lightness of the green of the leaf, the slightly heart shape of the leaf appeals to me. To identify and enjoy the fragrance of an herb, gently squeeze or rub a leaf and sniff it.

Medicinal uses of Lemon Balm
tea has an antibacterial and antiviral properties effective against the Herpes virus
mild sedative or calming agent
improves mood and mental performance
mosquito repellant (crushed leaves)
Culinary uses:
-teas, ice cream, desserts, fish, pesto

Warning: lemon balm should be avoided by those on thyroid medication.

Cultivation: does best in zones 4-9, full sun and shade tolerant.

My daily garden tea recipe:
Lemon Balm-Two or three 5 inch sprigs
Mint- One 5 inch sprig of mint,
False Tarragon – one 3 inch sprig

Delicious, aromatic, nutritional and medicinal

Bring 4 cups of water to a boil and pour over the herbs in a teapot. Steep for 3 to 5 minutes and enjoy!


  1. Don’t use lemon balm if on thyroid medication!? Can you explain more. I looovvveee lemon balm and am now on raw thyroid supplement to support a sluggish thyroid. I hope there is some wiggle room for me to continue to use this all purpose, lovely herb.

    • Aloha KJB,
      There is some info in the literature cautioning the use of lemon balm with a sluggish thyroid (hypothyroid). Another source suggest lemon balm is beneficial for both hyper and hypo thyroid. My suggestion is to get a baseline TSH to determine the effect of lemon balm in your particular situation.
      Hope this helps.

Speak Your Mind