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Does Creeping Thyme Grow In Shade? (Explained)

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Last updated on September 23rd, 2022 at 01:52 pm

Creeping thyme amongst many other crawling ornamentals is not easy to plant. However, its compatibility with a variety of soil and light exposure makes it’s cultivation easy.

Nevertheless, cultivators tend to question the plant’s ability to survive poor light exposure. So let’s find out the truth.

Does creeping thyme grow in shade?

A simple answer is no. Creeping thyme thrives from full sun to light shade environments when growing. Despite this, if the creeping thyme plant was initially planted in the shade or moved entirely to a shady area, the plant will start to turn woody.

How Well Will My Creeping Thyme Plant Do In The Shade?

Creeping thyme plants are known to love well-drained soils. However, unlike other ground covering ornamentals, this one craves poor soil instead of fertilizer or organic soil.

It is preferable and more advisable to grow your creeping thyme plant in full sun if possible. Although some creeping thyme plants will tolerate a bit of shade, they will turn woody as time goes on.

Note that watering will keep the soil wholly moist but not wet as plants establish. Once a creeping thyme plant establishes, it will tolerate drier conditions and poor soil.

This period is when a little shade won’t harm the plant.

Aside from this, keeping the plant in a shady area will only increase the risks of diseases like root rot or fungal infections.

These will harm not only the creeping thyme but also the soil it is planted on. As a result, it’ll make the soil unsafe for any other incoming plants.

Tips For Growing Creeping Thyme Properly

Unlike any other ground cover or herb, creeping thyme does not require severe monitoring for it to bloom to your satisfaction.

Nevertheless, a few tips can guide you to get the best results out of the plant.

Some of these tips include:

1. Creeping thyme will grow better in soil with an alkaline balance.

2. Ensure you plant your creeping thyme in an area of your garden where the ground experiences good soil drainage.

3. Remember, this plant does not require soil that is nutrient-dense for it to bloom.

4. Creeping thyme will grow better in the presence of full sunlight.

5. As time goes on, the creeping thyme plant will develop woody stems. If this woody stem begins to dominate the plant, then it is the best time to remove it and replace it with a new variety to the garden.

6. You might not know this, but running creeping thyme will stimulate its growth.

7. Avoid overwatering the plant as it will leave the creeping thyme root damp and cause root rot.

8. Creeping thyme does not require excessive monitoring and attention to grow properly but try to pay attention to changes.

9. This plant can and will do well in any soil plant at all.

10. Plant your creeping thyme at least eight to twelve inches apart from each other to accommodate the spreading nature of the plant.

11. Thyme will grow well indoors so long as it receives a minimum of six hours of sunlight daily. This sunlight could be direct or indirect.

12. Proper air circulation and proper drainage can help reduce moisture-enhanced diseases, especially when there is the unavailability of full sun for the plant.

13. Re-water creeping thyme plants only when the soil has dried up to the surface.

Advantages Of Sunlight On Creeping Thyme Plant

When it comes to planting metabolism, sunlight plays a very crucial role. The advantages of sunlight can never be overemphasized.

Especially when talking about plants that are not moisture obsessed, like creeping thyme.

Some significant advantages of sunlight on creeping thyme include:

1. Aids the plant carry out photosynthesis. Plants need the sun when producing food, and creeping thyme is not an exception to this.

For this purpose, the plants should be supplied with enough sunlight but not too much.

2. Aids prevent moisture diseases in plants: creeping thyme will most likely suffer from root rot and wet feet whenever it is overwatered.

If you provide creeping thyme with enough sunlight, the heat from the sun will help dry up this excess soil moisture, causing root rot and wet feet to the plants.

3. Sunlight helps dry the soil. Dry soil cannot house fungus that causes diseases to the plants. This, simply put, means that sunlight helps prevent plant fungi diseases.

What Are The Effects Of Excessive Sunlight On Creeping Thymes?

Thyme is one of the world’s plants with many varieties(over 300 varieties).

Creeping thyme is a variety of thyme used primarily for decoration and covering of the ground (excess garden spaces) to protect it from the sun.

Although this plant’s primary purpose is to cover up the excess open garden spaces from the sun, too much sunlight can harm it and cause unpleasant damage.

Let’s take a look at some of these damages done by sunlight to the beautiful ground cover (creeping thyme).

1. Creeping thyme is naturally a woody perennial, but it’s not so woody until after the passing of the first three to four years.

Then, when this plant is exposed to excess sunlight, it tends to dry up any little moisture left to hold nutrients in the plant and ultimately make the plant wood up.

2. When there is too much sun and little or no watering on the creeping thyme plant.

The flowers that are the beauty of this plant begin to wrinkle, dry up, and fall—making the plant look quite unattractive and more or less like a weed.

3. For consumable creeping thyme, too much sun will make it lose its flavor quickly and easily.


Shade has never been the best option for any plant, mainly because plants need the sun to carry out their activities both for their benefit and the benefit of the gardeners.

For this reason, it is advisable always to ensure you supply your creeping thyme with enough sunlight for it to satisfy your needs(covering the soil or producing leaves for spices).

For an awe-inspiring result, you should provide up to six hours a day of sunlight to your screening thyme plant.


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