Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains
41. Lamiaceae, the Mint Family
2. Mentha L. -- Mint
1. Mentha arvensis L. -- Common mint
Erect to decumbent rhizomatous perennial 2-10 dm tall, frequently stoloniferous,
strongly mint-scented; stems simple or more often branched and spreading,
strigose at least on the angles, villous at the nodes. Leaves short-petioled,
the blades ovate to lanceolate or elliptic-lanceolate, 2-6(9) cm long, 0.6-2.5(4)
cm wide, glabrous to strigulose on the nerves, strongly punctate, acute to acuminate
at the tip, serrate, cuneate to rounded at the base. Flowers small, light
pink to lavender, crowded in bracteate, verticillate clusters in middle and
upper leaf axils, the bracts linear-subulate to linear-lanceolate; pedicels
1-3 mm long. Calyx regular, 5-toothed, 2-3 mm long, strigulose and glandular;
corolla nearly regular to slightly bilabiate, 4-6 mm long, glandular
on the outside, 4- or 5-lobed, the upper 2 lobes partly to completely fused;
stamens 4, strongly exserted; style exserted. Nutlets obovoid
to ellipsoid, 0.7-1 mm long, smooth, enclosed by the persistent calyx. Jul--Sep.
Wet meadows, marshes, ditches, stream banks, springs and other wet places; very
common; (Circumboreal, in N.Amer. s to VA, MO, n TX, NM and CA).
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