Monarda 'Gardenview Scarlet'

The fiery blooms peppering this yard high plant are irresistible to butterflies

Item # 48403

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A classic name in Bee Balm, Gardenview Scarlet has been delighting honeybees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and gardeners for many seasons. And no wonder: these blooms are brighter than others, and they arise on plants that are mildew-free and fragrant. There's no better choice for the sunny border, particularly if you have an area of damp or poorly draining soil.

Looking like starbursts or firecrackers, these 2-inch blooms are held straight up above the mint-scented foliage on bushy, beautiful plants. Filled with nectar, they are popular among pollinators, and are so ornamental you may just have to cut some for indoor arrangements. Expect Gardenview Scarlet to begin flowering in midsummer and to continue until the colder weather of early fall.

But even out of bloom, this Monarda is attractive and useful. The fragrant foliage can be used in teas; the plant gets its common name of Bee Balm because the leaves used to be put onto bee stings to relieve the pain! Many older varieties suffer from mildew in humid or rainy climates, but Gardenview Scarlet shows good resistance, remaining fresh and healthy all season.

Expect Gardenview Scarlet to reach 2 to 3 feet high and to spread gradually. Best in full sun in northern regions, this Monarda appreciates a bit of afternoon shade farther south and west. It doesn't mind heavy clay soil, and poor drainage or boggy conditions are not a problem. What a relief for those of us with less than perfect soil just waiting to be improved! This perennial is also a good choice for rain gardens.

Easy to care for and naturally resistant to most pests and diseases, Gardenview Scarlet is eager to make itself at home in your garden. Give it a chance this season! Zones 4-9.

Review Summary
(Based on 1 Reviews)

Overall Rating: 4.0 / 5.0


Lots Of Humming birds!
from OH wrote on February 06, 2013:

These do attract humming birds. I've seen as many as six at one time on these. However, I personally don't like the looks of them. I guess I'll suffer that because I love Humming Birds!

  • Butterflies like a lot of sunlight, so locate your garden in a sunny area.
  • If you live in a windy location, plant your butterfly-attracting plants near a building, fence, or hedge to protect them.
  • Plant a variety of nectar-rich plants, as well as shrubs and evergreens for shelter.
  • Since many butterflies and native flowering plants have co-evolved, try to put in some that are native to your area. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildlife Center provides lists of plants native to states and regions.
  • Certain colors are particularly attracting to butterflies – red, yellow, pink, purple, or orange blooms that are clustered or flat-topped, with a short flower tubes are especially attractive to adult butterflies.
  • Avoid using pesticides, especially around nectar-producing plants.
  • Provide a shallow source of water – try a birdbath with pebbles lining the bowl.
  • Place a rock in a sunny spot for butterfly basking and resting.
  • Create a "puddling area" by digging a shallow hole filled with compost or manure where rainwater will collect and release essential salts and minerals.
  • If you want butterflies to breed in your garden, put in some caterpillar food plants, such as parsley, milkweeds, asters, thistles, violets, clover, grasses, and Queen Anne’s Lace.
  • Since butterflies need nectar throughout the entire adult phase of their lives, try to create a design that will allow for a continuous bloom – when one stops blooming, another starts.
Bergamont, Beebalm, Oswego Tea


Set plants 12 to 18 inches apart. Though Monarda will tolerate any soil, best results will be obtained in a moisture-retentive, highly organic soil.


Removing faded flowers will prolong the blooming period. Divide every 3 to 4 years as necessary, discarding the central portion and replanting the vigorous outer segments of the clump. If mildew becomes a problem, regular spraying is advised. Plants may be cut to the ground after blooming for appearances’ sake.


Zones 4-9

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Tips for gardening in particularly hot, dry climates:

1. Water with a drip system whenever possible – soak the bed slowly and thoroughly to a depth of 10" to 12".

2. Watering deeply every 3 to 5 days is preferable to a shallow daily watering.

3. Water in the early morning, so foliage has time to dry.

4. Add a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch or similar material to aid in water retention and help keep the roots cool during hot weather.