Monarda / beebalm

Genus: Monarda

Common Name: Beebalm


Monarda is native to most regions of North America, with the exception of California, where it is found only in isolated areas. As its common name suggests, Monarda species are attractive to a wide variety of bees. All species of Monarda are subject to powdery mildew, which can be minimized with good drainage.


Native Regions

Nationwide, the United States, other than Alaska; southern provinces of Canada



Routinely available and easily grown in most parts of North America



Perennial, annual, biennial, depending upon species


Bloom Time



Average Height

3-1/2 feet


Flower Color







Full sun, partial shade


Water Requirements

Average to wet


Recommended Species

Monarda fistulosa (wild bergamot) is a widely distributed, native species, found throughout most parts of the U.S., east of the Rockies and southern Canada. It is also a routinely available showy, garden plant, having clusters of lavender, pink or white pom poms. It grows naturally in open fields, woods, wet meadows and ditches and is highly attractive to bumble bees.


Monarda punctata (spotted beebalm) requires less moisture and is attractive to a broader range of bee species. It grows naturally in prairies, plains, meadows, pastures and savannahs, primarily in the east, south and midwestern United States.


Monarda didyma (scarlet beebalm) is a popular perennial in gardens, with showy clusters of bright red tubular flowers in the summer that are very attractive to hummingbirds. It requires a moist soil and is susceptible to powdery mildew, though some cultivars, such as Jacob Cline, are mildew resistant. In its natural montane and northeastern habitat, didyma will bloom from late spring through fall.

bee Visitors

Andrena / Mining Bee

Anthidium / Carder Bee

Anthophora / Digger Bee

Bombus / Bumble Bee

Colletes / Polyester Bee

Habropoda / Digger Bee

Halictus / Sweat Bee

Hylaeus / Yellow-faced Bee

Lasioglossum / Sweat Bee

Megachile / Leafcutter Bee

Svastra / Sunflower Bee

Xylocopa / Large Carpenter Bee

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