How to Plant Thyme Plugs


Thyme (Thymus), is a woody, low-growing herb, perfect for a ground cover, in a rock garden, or along garden paths. Plant thyme around stepping stones, and it will climb over the stones, softening the hard edges and providing a feeling of permanence. In spring, thyme will be covered with masses of tiny lavender or pink flowers. Planting thyme plugs is an easy way to cover a large area fairly inexpensively.

Step 1

Purchase a tray of thyme plugs at a garden center or nursery in spring. If you have existing thyme plants, or if you have friends or neighbors who have plants, you can tear off small plugs, and replant them.

Step 2

Use a hoe or shovel to cultivate the soil to a depth of 6 to 8 inches. Remove weeds, along with rocks and dirt clods. Don't amend the soil, because soil that is too rich can cause the thyme to grow long and leggy rather than compact and bushy. Be sure to plant thyme in full sunlight.

Step 3

Plant the thyme plugs about 8 inches apart in the cultivated soil. In time, the thyme plants will spread out.

Step 4

Water the thyme plugs immediately after planting, and keep the soil moist until you see new growth. After that time, water the thyme occasionally, especially during hot, dry periods.

Things You'll Need

  • Tray of thyme plugs
  • Hoe or shovel
  • Water


  • West Virginia University: Growing Herbs in the Home Garden
  • Thyme
Keywords: thyme, thyme plugs, ground cover

About this Author

M.H. Dyer is a long-time writer, editor and proofreader. She has been a contributor to the East-Oregonian Newspaper and See Jane Run magazine, and is author of a memoir, “The Tumbleweed Chronicles, a Sideways Look at Life." She holds an Master of Fine Arts from National University, San Diego.