I plant sweet alyssum in my garden every May, and it always makes me feel peaceful and happy. The blossoms smell lovely—and they’re edible too, as alyssum is related to broccoli. It is native to Mediterranean countries, where it sometimes is used in salads. Alyssum means “without madness,” which comes from the ancient Greeks’ use of the plant as herbal medicine to calm angry feelings and promote emotional balance. They also believed it could prevent rabies. 

White alyssum in my garden next to a large rock. 

In warmer climates alyssum grows year-round, but where I live it gets too cold for that! Having to replant it every spring is okay, though, because working in the garden helps with feeling more centered and (literally) grounded. So, alyssum is good for self-nurturing whether it is eaten or whether it is planted just for its pretty blossoms and pleasant fragrance. Either way, it’s part of a peaceful and calming flower garden!

Nurturing Thursday was started by Becca Givens and seeks to “give this planet a much needed shot of fun, support and positive energy.” Visit her site to find more Nurturing Thursday posts and a list of frequent contributors.


  1. I’ve never been a gardener, but I do adore gardens 🙂 And I’ve always been fascinated by plants, their origins, their uses… so I’ve learnt a lot from your post!
    And thanks for your welcome – see you next Thursday 😀

  2. Thank you for all the interesting facts about alyssum, Meg ~ I didn’t know any of them, except that it’s a pretty border~filling plant. I love the Greeks’ use for it! I’m going to get some for my garden this weekend ~ I’ll probably have to replant it every year too. (That’s probably why I haven’t bothered with it until now.) It’s interesting that we’ve both chosen to write about our gardens this week ~ working in them is so nurturing, both ways! 🙂

  3. I did not realize allysum is edible — I have always enjoyed them in a garden! Thank you for linking to Nurturing Thursday!

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