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Clinopodium vulgare (Wild basil)
Bruso, George H.

Clinopodium vulgare

Clinopodium vulgare L.

Wild Basil

Lamiaceae (Mint Family)

Synonym(s): Calamintha vulgaris, Clinopodium vulgare var. neogaea, Satureja vulgaris, Satureja vulgaris var. diminuta, Satureja vulgaris var. neogaea


USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N), SPM (N)

Rose-purple flowers, mingled with hairy bracts that give them a woolly appearance, are in a dense, rounded cluster at the top of the square, hairy stem and in smaller clusters in the upper leaf axils.
Flowers: about 1/2" (1.3 cm) long; 2-lipped.

This plant is native in the northern part of its range but was probably introduced from Europe, where it is widespread, in the southern part. The dried leaves can be used as a seasoning although they are milder than those of the commercial basils (Oncimum spp.), other members of the mint family.


From the Image Gallery

11 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: Up to about 2 feet tall.
Fruit: Nutlets.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Purple
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AR , AZ , CO , CT , DC , DE , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MT , NC , NH , NJ , NM , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , TN , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV
Canada: NB , NL , NS
Native Distribution: Manitoba to Nova Scotia; south to upland North Carolina; west to Tennessee and Kansas; north to Minnesota.
Native Habitat: Roadsides, pastures, thickets.

Web Reference

Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

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


Record Modified: 2023-04-06
Research By: TWC Staff

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