Desert mint

Monardella odoratissima


The Desert mint is a sprawling perennial herb that is mostly native to sagebrush scrub, yellow pine forest and lodgepole pine forest plant communities of California. It has distinctive whorl-like flowers ranging in color from white to purple; long leaves and highly fragrant foliage when crushed. Like most perennial plants, this species can be grown in ornamental gardens to enjoy the seasonal display of color and attraction to birds and butterflies. It is a short-lived species that provides good landscape value for 2-3 years.

Desert mint is adapted to sunny and warm planting spaces in the Inland Empire where it can be sustained with low amounts of summer water. It is easily combined with monkey flower, penstemon, buckwheat and sage for a colorful and diverse hummingbird and butterfly garden. Loam soils and periodic summer water helps achieve the most attractive foliage character and flowering performance.

Plant Type: Perennial
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Spreading, Sprawling, Dense
Growth Rate: Short-lived, Fast
Foliage Color: Bright green
Flower Color: White, Purple, Lavender
Flower Season: Summer, Spring
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil, Loam
Exposure Adaptations: Heat, All day sun, Partial sun
Function: Wildlife value, Hummingbird plant, Grouped, Flowering accent plant, Container plant, California native, Borders, Fragrant foliage, Attracts butterflies, Small spaces
Height: 1 ft.
Width: 3 ft.