Hummingbird Mint: Agastache ‘Ava’

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Three Agastache ‘Ava’ (aka hummingbird mint or hyssop) plants reside within my primary sunny backyard bed beside Russian sage (Peroskvia), Lilium rubrum plus also a ‘Royal Purple’ smoke bush (Cotinus).   These plants include amazing color to my summer and autumn garden, when blossoms are fewer.

I have not captured a fantastic photograph of this hummingbirds seeing my hummingbird mint crops, however they came daily.   Occasionally several times.   They also seen the butterfly bushes, Russian sage and catmint, but Agastache ‘Ava’ was their first quit.

Ava originates in spring because a low mound of grey-green leaves (top centre above) and develops into a mature size of two ft wide and 4-5 ft tall.   Our growing season is short and my crops are just two years old, so they are still maturing.   Ava’s square stalks and aromatic leaves indicate it as a part of the mint family.   It develops in zones 5-10, unlike a lot of agastaches which are not as hardy, and Ava is touted as being resistant to deer and rabbits.

Long lasting colored calyxes (the darker pink part at the bottom of the blossoms above) are exactly what make Ava really unique among agastaches.   Even following the pink blossoms drop, the calyxes stay brilliant until hard frost.

From the photograph above, the Russian blossom has finished blooming and peony leaves are beginning to turn yellow for autumn whilst Ava still reveals colour at top.   From August through October, Ava’s lavender-pink blossoms have been a welcome presence in my backyard.

Ava develops best in lean soil, low water and sunlight.   My crops get a tiny floppy since they get a lot of water and the soil is too rich, so that I place plant hoops across the foundation to hold them up.   Ava will rot and perish in waterlogged soil, but my plants are nice from the well-drained dirt of a mounded mattress.

Ava is available from many online resources.   I purchased mine in High Country Gardens and has been delighted with the infant plants which came in good shape.   If you’re trying to find a tall, sturdy, very low maintenance plant in order to add interest to a end-of-season backyard, Ava is a superb selection.

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