Wild Bergamot - Monarda clinopardia • (Mint family - Labiatae)

 

Wild Bergamot - Monarda clinopardia • (Mint family - Labiatae) Similar to Bee-balm but whitish with whitish bracts. Both are are aromatic mints of approximately the same size and general appearance, but the leaves of wild bergamot are narrower and more willow-like, and it grows in much drier places. The flower head is a dense, rounded cluster of whitish tubular flowers at the top of a square stem. Bracts often whitish.

 

 

 

 

A similar species, M. fistulosa, is pinkish or pale lilac, and the bracts are often tinged with lilac. 2- 3 ft. Dry edges, thickets, clearings. As with many members of the mint family, the leaves were used to make a mint-flavored tea. The Native Americans also boiled the leaves along with their meat to enhance flavor. The oil from boiled leaves was inhaled to relieve bronchial complaints.

 

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