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Pycnanthemum virginianum (Virginia mountain mint)
Makin, Julie

Pycnanthemum virginianum

Pycnanthemum virginianum (L.) T. Dur. & B.D. Jacks. ex B.L. Rob. & Fernald

Virginia Mountain Mint

Lamiaceae (Mint Family)

Synonym(s): Koellia virginiana


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

Virginia Mountain-mint is a stout perennial, becoming multi-branched toward top of its 2-3 ft. height. Tiny, white, mint-like flowers, often spotted with purple, are arranged in numerous small, dense clusters. The clusters, which bloom only a few at a time, arise from leaf axils at the stem tips. The foliage of this leafy plant is covered with a whitish bloom.

Virginia Mountain Mint is a member of the family Lamiaceae which includes aromatic herbs or shrubs, rarely trees or vines, usually with stems square in cross-section, 4-sided, and flowers in long clusters, heads, or interrupted whorls on the stem. There are about 180 genera and 3,500 species nearly worldwide. The Mediterranean region, the chief area of diversity, has produced many spices and flavorings; various mints, oregano, marjoram, thyme, sage, and basil. Catnip and lavender are in the family.


From the Image Gallery

16 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: Up to about 3 feet tall.
Fruit: Nutlets.

Bloom Information

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


USA: AL , AR , CT , DE , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , ND , NE , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SD , TN , VA , VT , WI , WV
Canada: NB , ON , QC
Native Distribution: ME to ND, s. to GA & OK
Native Habitat: Wet prairies; stream edges; moist bluffs

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Moist, calcareous soils.
Conditions Comments: Can be aggressive but is less so in drier soil.


Attracts: Butterflies

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees
Special Value to Bumble Bees
Special Value to Honey Bees
Supports Conservation Biological Control

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.


Description: Seeds are so tiny it is best to plant them in flats. Divide plants in spring or take tip cuttings in early summer.
Seed Treatment: No pretreatment necessary.
Commercially Avail: yes

Mr. Smarty Plants says

Edible Plants for a Virginia Rain Garden
October 21, 2009
Can you recommend edible plants that would be appropriate for use in a rain garden? I'm located in Charlottesville, VA, but this can be in general as well.
view the full question and answer

National Wetland Indicator Status

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.

Web Reference

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

Additional resources

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


Record Modified: 2023-02-23
Research By: TWC Staff

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