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Clinopodium douglasii

Clinopodium douglasii (Benth.) Kuntze

Yerba Buena, Oregon-tea

Lamiaceae (Mint Family)

Synonym(s): Micromeria chamissonis, Satureja chamissonis, Satureja douglasii

USDA Symbol: CLDO2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (I), CAN (N)

Oregon-tea or Yerba Buena is a flat, creeping perennial that spreads to 6 ft. across. The bright-green, velvety, rounded leaves have tiny scallops along their margins and a minty fragrance. The tiny, white flowers are two-lipped and borne in the leaf axils.

The common name Yerba Buena, Spanish for "good herb," has been applied to several species of mint, especially Spearmint (Mentha spicata), but in the West it generally refers to S. douglasii. The mild and delightful tea made from the leaves of this delicately fragrant plant has been used to treat many ailments and to alleviate the pain of childbirth.


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Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: Up to about 6 inches tall by 6 feet across.
Fruit: Nutlets.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AK , CA , ID , MT , OR , WA
Canada: BC
Native Distribution: S. CA Coast Ranges to s.w. B.C.; mostly west of the Cascades but extending e. into n. ID & w. MT
Native Habitat: Forest/scrub or forest/prairie interfaces; shaded woods; seasonal creeks; below 3000 ft.

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Moist soils.
Conditions Comments: Yerba Buena is a good, non-aggressive ground cover for moist, shaded areas.


Description: Increase by seed, rooted sections or cuttings.
Seed Treatment: Seed requires no special treatment.
Commercially Avail: yes

National Wetland Indicator Status

Status: FACU
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden - Santa Barbara, CA


Bibref 841 - Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants (2006) Burrell, C. C.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 37 - Calscape (2019) California Native Plant Society
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Clinopodium douglasii in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Clinopodium douglasii in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Clinopodium douglasii


Record Modified: 2023-02-01
Research By: TWC Staff

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