Mentha spicata

Family:LAMIACEAE
Species:Mentha spicata Linnaeus
Common Name:Spearmint
Habitat:**
Associated Ecological Communities:**
Growth Habit:Herb
Duration:Perennial
Category:Vascular
USDA Symbol:MESP3
Plant Notes:Spearmint is an introduced herbaceous perennial in the Mint family (Lamiaceae). It is native to Europe and Asia. Spearmint is widely cultivated in Alabama, and has escaped to roadsides, wet ditches, and stream and pond margins. It is a perennial from a rhizome. Stems are erect, square in cross section, glabrous or with a few hairs, branched, and green to reddish-brown in color. Leaves are opposite, sessile or with short petioles, ovate to oblong or lanceolate in outline, pubescent or glabrous, with serrate margins. Due to a long history of cultivation the leaf shape and pubescence varies greatly. All parts of the plant are aromatic when crushed. Flowers are produced in a whorl that appears as one cluster, but is composed of two opposite axillary cymes (verticillasters). These are arranged in a terminal spike that is interrupted at the base. The individual flowers have a calyx with 5 teeth and a purplish, pinkish, or white corolla with 4 lobes, the upper lobe slightly larger and 2-toothed. The fruit is a brown nutlet. Spearmint is widely cultivated as a culinary herb. It can be eaten raw, added to salads, or used as a flavoring agent in various drinks and confections. Spearmint oil is also used in toothpaste, soaps, chewing gums, mouthwashes, and cough medicines. Numerous cultivars exist. Spearmint prefers a wet soil rich in organic matter in full to partial sun. It spreads aggressively by rhizomes and stolons, and is best grown in pots to confine it.—A. Diamond.
Taxonomic Notes:**
Status:Not Native, FACW+ (NWI)
References:**
Specimen: View specimen details in the Alabama Herbarium Consortium Specimen Database

** Not applicable or data not available.

Classification

FamilyLAMIACEAE - Mint family
Genus Mentha
Species Mentha spicata Linnaeus - Spearmint

Citation

Citation MENTHA SPICATA Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 576. 1753.
Basionym: **
Type: Cult. in Holland, without data, Herb. Clifford 306 (lectotype: BM). Lectotypified by A. O. Tucker et al., Taxon 29: 234. 1980.

** Not applicable or data not available.

Synonyms

SynonymFull CitationBasionymType
Mentha aquatica var. crispa Mentha aquatica Linnaeus, var. crispa (Linnaeus) Bentham, Labiat. Gen. Spec. 177. 1833.Mentha crispa Linnaeus 1753. 
Mentha crispa Mentha crispa Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 576. 1753. Cult. in Holland, without data, Herb. Clifford 306 (lectotype: BM). Lectotypified by A. O. Tucker et al., Taxon 29: 233-234. 1980.
Mentha piperita var. crispa Mentha piperita Linnaeus, var. crispa (Linnaeus) W. D. J. Koch, Syn. Fl. Germ. Helv. 551. 1837.Mentha crispa Linnaeus 1753. 
Mentha spicata var. viridis Mentha spicata Linnaeus, var. viridis Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 576. 1753, nom. inadmiss.Mentha spicata Linnaeus 1753. 
Mentha sylvestris var. crispa Mentha sylvestris Linnaeus, var. crispa (Linnaeus) Alefeld, Landw. Fl. 117. 1866.Mentha crispa Linnaeus 1753. 
Mentha sylvestris var. glabra Mentha sylvestris Linnaeus, var. glabra W. D. J. Koch, Syn. Fl. Germ. Helv. 550. 1837.Mentha spicata Linnaeus 1753. 
Mentha sylvestris var. viridis Mentha sylvestris Linnaeus, var. viridis Alefeld, Landw. Fl. 118. 1866, nom. illegit.Mentha viridis Linnaeus 1762, nom. illegit.; Mentha spicata Linnaeus, var. viridis Linnaeus 1753, nom. inadmiss.; Mentha spicata Linnaeus 1753. 
Mentha viridis Mentha viridis Linnaeus, Sp. Pl., ed. 2. 804. 1763, nom. illegit.Mentha spicata Linnaeus, var. viridis Linnaeus 1753, nom. inadmiss.; Mentha spicata Linnaeus 1753. 

Specimens and Distribution

This species has been reported in the following counties by the herbaria listed. An overview of the individual specimens are provided in the table that follows. Click on the accession number to view details; click on column headers to sort; choose a county or herbaria to filter the specimen data.

Counties included on distribution map: Bibb, Calhoun, Etowah, Jackson, Jefferson, Lee, Limestone, Macon, Marengo, Mobile, Montgomery

Counties represented by specimen data listed below:

Herbaria represented by specimen data listed below: ALNHS, AUA, JSU, TROY, UNA, UWAL

Range of years during which specimens were collected: 1978 - 1978

Barcode / Accession No. County Coll. Date Collector &
Collection No.
Herbarium &
Herbarium Name Used
Image
JSU126312 Etowah 28 Aug 1994 Hodge, Lesley M.
3277
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
UWAL0045646 Limestone 03 Aug 2018 Finzel, Brian
s.n.
UWAL
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
TROY000020802 Jefferson 11 Aug 2002 Diamond, Alvin R.
13535
TROY
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
UWAL0017423 Marengo 25 Jul 2013 England, J. Kevin
4434
UWAL
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
TROY000046700 Marengo 25 Jul 2013 England, J. Kevin
4434
TROY
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
JSU126314 Calhoun 16 Jun 1975 Wayner, Gary A.
519
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
AUA_ACC_48065 Jackson 4 Aug 1973 Spencer, S.K.
132
AUA
Mentha Spicata L.
AUA_ACC_41976 Montgomery 1 Aug 1981 Eble, C.F.
088
AUA
Mentha Spicata L.
JSU126315 Calhoun 19 Aug 1969 Landers, Kenneth E.
s.n.
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
AUA_ACC_60721 Lee Hyatt, C.A.
AUA
Mentha Spicata L.
UNA00040269 Limestone 01 Aug 1978 Haynes, Robert R.
6806
UNA
Mentha spicata L.
AUA_ACC_60720 Lee Anonymous
AUA
Mentha Spicata L.
JSU126317 Calhoun 17 Jun 1985 Evans, Janet
004
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
JSU126316 Jackson 23 Jun 1975 Wayner, Gary A.
525
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
AUA_ACC_23880 Macon 5 Jul 1971 Spratling, R.E.
062
AUA
Mentha Spicata L.
UWAL0017881 Calhoun 12 Aug 2013 Spaulding, Daniel D.
13835
UWAL
Mentha spicata L.
TROY000020801 Bibb 14 Aug 2000 Kral, Robert
90126
TROY
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
ALNHS00006335 Limestone 03 Aug 2018 Barger, T. Wayne
SP#4285
ALNHS
Mentha spicata L.
JSU126318 Calhoun 17 Jun 1985 Evans, Janet
004
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
UNA00073495 Calhoun 12 Aug 2013 Spaulding, Daniel D.
13835
UNA
Mentha spicata L.
JSU126313 Calhoun 16 Jun 1975 Wayner, Gary A.
519
JSU
Mentha spicata Linnaeus
AUA_ACC_42415 Lee 29 Jun 1972 Bloodworth, N.Beth
030
AUA
Mentha Spicata L.
UNA00040268 Mobile _ Jul _ Mohr, Charles
s.n.
UNA
Mentha spicata L.
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