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Clinopodium coccineum (Nutt. ex Hook.) Kuntze
Scarlet Calamint, Scarlet Wild Basil, Red Savory, Red Mint Shrub, Scarlet Balm, Southern Calamint, Red Basil
Lamiaceae (Mint Family)
Synonym(s): Calamintha coccinea, Clinopodium macrocalyx, Cunila coccinea, Satureja coccinea
USDA Symbol: CLCO10
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
Scarlet Calamint is a small shrub with wiry stems and small, obovate to spatulate, opposite leaves. The flowers are strongly two-lipped and scarlet with darker red spots. The lower lip has three distinct lobes and there are 4 anthers per flower.
This species should be cultivated because it blooms thoughout the year and the flowers are especially colorful. Yellow-flowered variants occasionally occur. Foliage is mildly aromatic.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Habit: Subshrub , Shrub
Leaf Retention: Evergreen , Semi-evergreen
Leaf Arrangement: Opposite
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Oblanceolate , Obovate , Spatulate
Leaf Pubescence: Glandular
Leaf Margin: Entire
Leaf Base: Cuneate
Leaf Texture: Leathery
Breeding System: Flowers Bisexual
Fruit Type: Nut
Size Notes: To 1 meter in height.
Flower: Flowers 25-50mm. Petals scarlet
Fruit: Brown, 1mm nutlets.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Red
Bloom Time: Jan , Feb , Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct , Nov , Dec
Bloom Notes: Flowers scarlet. May bloom year-round, but flowering peaks in summer.
DistributionUSA: AL , FL , GA , MS
Native Distribution: Southern Georgia to Southern Mississippi and south to Central Florida.
Native Habitat: Sand hills and sandy flatwoods on the coastal plain.
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)
Drought Tolerance: Medium
Heat Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Sandy soils.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Showy flowers produced year-round.
Use Wildlife: Flowers very attractive to hummingbirds.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Fragrant Foliage: yes
Nectar Source: yes
PropagationPropagation Material: Clump Division , Seeds , Semi-hardwood Cuttings
Description: Stick cuttings in early summer.
Seed Collection: Spring or fall.
Maintenance: Takes pruning.
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE
BibliographyBibref 1620 - Gardening with Native Plants of the South (Reprint Edition) (2009) Wasowski, S. with A. Wasowski
Bibref 565 - Trees, Shrubs, and Woody Vines of Northern Florida and Adjacent Georgia and Alabama (1989) Godfrey, R.K.
Bibref 1247 - Wildflowers of Mississippi (unpublished manuscript) (0) A.D. Lewis
Search More Titles in Bibliography
Web ReferenceWebref 57 - Atlas of Florida Plants (2020) Institute for Systematic Botany
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Clinopodium coccineum in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Clinopodium coccineum in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Clinopodium coccineum
MetadataRecord Modified: 2023-04-06
Research By: Joseph A. Marcus