1. Family: Lamiaceae Martinov
    1. Mentha L.

      1. This genus is accepted, and its native range is Cosmopolitan.

    [FTEA]

    Lamiaceae (Labiatae), A.J. Paton, G. Bramley, O. Ryding, R.M. Polhill, Y.B. Harvey, M. Iwarsson, F. Willis, P.B. Phillipson, K. Balkwill, C.W. Lukhoba, D.F. Otieno, & R.M. Harley. Mentha, RM Harley. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2009

    Habit
    Perennial, rarely annual herbs, subshrubs or shrubs, usually gynodioecious, strongly aromatic with sessile glands
    Stem
    Stems often rhizomatous, quadrangular
    Leaves
    Leaves opposite, entire or toothed, petiolate or sessile
    Inflorescences
    Inflorescence of few–many-flowered axillary cymes, pedunculate or not, when many-flowered often either forming dense verticils along stem, in axils of leaf-like bracts, or congested into terminal spiciform thyrses in axils of reduced bracts; bracteoles inconspicuous
    Flowers
    Flowers pedicellate
    Calyx
    Calyx either subactinomorphic, (4–)5-lobed, lobes subequal, triangular to subulate or acicular, or slightly 2-lipped, with the posterior lip 3-lobed and the anterior lip 2lobed, with anterior lobes often longer, tube cylindrical or infundibuliform, 10–15veined, throat hairy or glabrous
    Corolla
    Corolla lilac, pink or white, subactinomorphic, 4-lobed, lobes spreading, subequal, or posterior lip often slightly broader, weakly 2-lobed or emarginate, rarely entire; corolla tube ± cylindrical or rarely gibbous on anterior side, usually included within calyx tube
    Stamens
    Stamens 4, subequal, exserted, divergent (included in male-sterile plants); anthers ellipsoidal, thecae parallel, distinct
    Disc
    Disk ± regular
    Ovary
    Ovary deeply 4-lobed; style gynobasic with stigma lobes subequal, shortly spreading
    Fruits
    Nutlets pale to dark brown, ovoid, smooth to rugose, not mucilaginous.
    Note
    Several mints are widely cultivated throughout the world for culinary or medicinal purposes. Most frequently, in the Flora area (Jex-Blake, Gard. E. Afr., ed. 4: 267 (1957); Williams, U.O.P.Z.: 350 (1949)) one can expect to find the Garden Mint, Mentha spicata L. ( M. viridis L.) and some of its hybrids. These are most easily recognised by the characteristic spearmint scent and glabrous or subglabrous lanceolate or ovate-lanceolate foliage. Mentha spicata has a slender spiciform inflorescence, as does its sterile hybrid with M. suaveolens Erhardt, Mentha villosa Huds. In the wild, in Europe, hairy forms occasionally arise from seed, but these are very unlikely to occur in the Flora area. M. spicata and M. villosa can be difficult to separate by morphological characters, although the latter often has broader and more rugose leaves. Another hybrid, M. piperita L., the Peppermint, ( M. aquatica spicata), is also recorded as a cultivated plant. This too has a very distinctive, strong scent, and its oil, which contains a very high proportion of the terpenoid menthol, is used for flavouring confectionary and toothpaste. It has a broader spike of flowers intermediate in shape between that of its parents, and the leaves are distinctly petiolate. In many parts of the tropics this has been replaced by the Japanese mint, M. canadensis L. cv. piperascens. This grows more vigorously under tropical conditions and is widely used commercially. A somewhat hairy mint, it is easily recognised by its verticillate inflorescence, the verticils of flowers arising from the axils of leaf-like bracts. The only other mint likely to be encountered in cultivation is the Pennyroyal, M. pulegium L. This is a plant of lower stature, with smaller, ± elliptic leaves, entire or slightly toothed, with a pungent scent. The calyx is weakly 2-lipped and is distinctly hairy in the throat. In habit, it is often procumbent with shortly erect flowering stems, though entirely erect forms are also known. There is evidence that some mints, from the north temperate zone, are shy of flowering, due to differences in day length.
    [LKGF]

    Harley, R.M. et al. (2004). Labiatae, in The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants (K. Kubitzki, ed. in chief) VI: 167-275. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, Heidelberg, New York.

    Habit
    Perennial, rarely annual herbs, subshrubs or shrubs, usually gynodioecious, strongly aromatic
    Stem
    Stems often rhizomatous
    Inflorescences
    Inflorescence of few- to many-flowered axillary cymes, pedunculate or not, often forming either dense verticillasters along stem, in axils of leaf-like bracts, or congested into terminal spiciform thyrses in axils of reduced bracts
    Bracts
    Bracts leaf-like or reduced
    Bracteoles
    Bracteoles inconspicuous, rarely broader or digitately lobed
    Calyx
    Calyx ± actinomorphic, 5-(rarely 4-)lobed, lobes subequal, triangular to subulate or acicular, or slightly 2-lipped, (3/2), anterior lobes often longer, tube cylindrical to infundibuliform, 10-15-nerved, throat hairy or glabrous
    Corolla
    Corolla ± actinomorphic, 4-lobed, lilac, pink or white, lobes spreading, subequal, or posterior lobe slightly broader, often emarginate, corolla-tube ± cylindrical or rarely gibbous on anterior side, usually included within calyx-tube
    Stamens
    Stamens 4, subequal, exserted, divergent (included in male-sterile plants), anthers ellipsoidal, thecae parallel, distinct
    Stigma
    Stigma-lobes subequal, shortly spreading
    Disc
    Disc ± symmetrical
    Fruits
    Nutlets ovoid, smooth to rugose, pale to dark brown, not mucilaginous;
    Note
    2n = 18, 20, 24, 36, 40, 42, 48, 54, 60, 66, 72, 78, 84, 90, 96, 108, 120, 132. About 20 species. Hybrids are of frequent occurrence in sect. Mentha (Harley and Brighton 1977). These can persist and spread widely by vegetative means. Mentha spicata L. and
    Ecology
    In damp, open habitats, often by water
    Distribution
    Especially Mediterranean and Australasian (one species in New Zealand), but extending through Europe, Asia and Africa to the Cape, and with one species in North America and some cultivated species now introduced worldwide, including the Central and Wester
    [LKGF]
    Use
    Some species cultivated since antiquity as potherbs.

    Images

    Distribution

    Native to:

    Afghanistan, Alaska, Albania, Alberta, Algeria, Altay, Amur, Angola, Arizona, Arkansas, Austria, Azores, Baleares, Baltic States, Belarus, Belgium, Botswana, British Columbia, Bulgaria, Buryatiya, California, Cambodia, Canary Is., Cape Provinces, Cape Verde, Central European Rus, Chad, Chatham Is., China North-Central, China South-Central, China Southeast, Chita, Colorado, Connecticut, Corse, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Delaware, Denmark, East Aegean Is., East European Russia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Finland, Florida, France, Free State, Føroyar, Georgia, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Idaho, Illinois, India, Indiana, Inner Mongolia, Iowa, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Irkutsk, Italy, Japan, Jawa, Kamchatka, Kansas, Kazakhstan, Kentucky, Kenya, Khabarovsk, Kirgizstan, Korea, Krasnoyarsk, Kriti, Krym, Kuril Is., KwaZulu-Natal, Laos, Lebanon-Syria, Lesotho, Lesser Sunda Is., Libya, Madeira, Magadan, Maine, Malawi, Malaya, Maluku, Manchuria, Manitoba, Maryland, Masachusettes, Mexico Central, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mongolia, Montana, Morocco, Myanmar, Namibia, Nebraska, Nepal, Netherlands, Nevada, New Brunswick, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New South Wales, New York, New Zealand North, New Zealand South, North Carolina, North Caucasus, North Dakota, North European Russi, Northern Provinces, Northern Territory, Northwest European R, Northwest Territorie, Norway, Nova Scotia, Ohio, Oklahoma, Ontario, Oregon, Pakistan, Palestine, Pennsylvania, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Primorye, Qinghai, Queensland, Québec, Rhode I., Romania, Rwanda, Sakhalin, Sardegna, Saskatchewan, Saudi Arabia, Sicilia, Sinai, South Australia, South Dakota, South European Russi, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sulawesi, Sumatera, Svalbard, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tadzhikistan, Tanzania, Tasmania, Tennessee, Texas, Thailand, Tibet, Transcaucasus, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkey-in-Europe, Turkmenistan, Tuva, Uganda, Ukraine, Utah, Uzbekistan, Vermont, Victoria, Vietnam, Virginia, Washington, West Himalaya, West Siberia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Xinjiang, Yakutskiya, Yugoslavia, Yukon, Zambia, Zimbabwe

    Introduced into:

    Alabama, Amsterdam-St.Paul Is, Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Argentina South, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Bolivia, Brazil South, Chile Central, Chile North, Chile South, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, District of Columbia, Dominican Republic, Falkland Is., Fiji, Galápagos, Gambia, Gilbert Is., Gulf of Guinea Is., Haiti, Hawaii, Juan Fernández Is., Labrador, Louisiana, Mauritania, Mexico Southwest, Mississippi, Newfoundland, Niger, Norfolk Is., North Carolina, Prince Edward I., Puerto Rico, Society Is., South Carolina, St.Helena, Trinidad-Tobago, Tristan da Cunha, Uruguay, Venezuela

    Mentha L. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Sands, M.J.S. [87], Indonesia K000932249
    Wight, R. [Cat. no. s.n.], India K001132517
    Cope, T.A. [RBG 200], United Kingdom K000914353

    First published in Sp. Pl.: 576 (1753)

    Accepted by

    • Govaerts, R. (2003). World Checklist of Selected Plant Families Database in ACCESS: 1-216203. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

    Literature

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    • Kubitzki, Fam. Gen. Vasc. Pl. 7: 237–238 (2004)
    • Fl. Europaea 3: 183–186 (1972)
    • E & P., Pf. IV. 3a: 320 (1896)
    • Bull. Trav. Bot. Soc. Genève 5: 20–122 (1889)
    • Gen. Pl. ed. 5: 250 (1754)
    • Sp. Pl.: 576 (1753)
    Lamiaceae Key Genus Fact Sheets
    • Harley RM, Atkins S, Budantsev AL, Cantino PD, Conn BJ, Grayer R, Harley MM, de Kok RPJ, Krestovskaja T, Morales R, Paton AJ, Ryding O, and Upson T. 2004. Labiatae, in The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants (K. Kubitzki, ed. in chief) VI: 167-275. Sp
    • Harley, in P.H. Davis (ed.). Flora of Turkey 7: 384-394 (1982), rev. reg.
    • Harley, Flora Europaea 3: 183-186 (1972), rev. reg.
    • Minthe St.-Lag., Ann. Soc. Bot. Lyon 7: 130 (1880).
    • Menthella Pérard, Bull. Soc. Bot. France 17: 205 (1870).
    • Preslia Opiz, Naturalientausch 8: 86 (1824).
    • Pulegium Mill., Gard. Dict. Abr. ed. 4 (1754)., (1753).
    • Mentha L., Sp. Pl. 2: 576 (1753)
    • Audibertia Benth., Edwards's Bot. Reg. 15: t. 1282 (1829).

    Sources

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
    'The Herbarium Catalogue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet http://www.kew.org/herbcat [accessed on Day Month Year]'. Please enter the date on which you consulted the system.
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2019. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2019. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Lamiaceae Key Genus Fact Sheets
    Nina Davies, Gemma Bramley and Don Kirkup, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0