Herbaceous plants of Ohio

LAMIACEAE
(mint family)

The Lamiaceae are anything but lame. Most of its members are herbaceous plants with SIMPLE, OPPOSITE leaves and SQUARE STEMS.

The flowers are 5-MEROUS and ZYGOMORPHIC, and most commonly petals are fused into two lips (BILABIATE), bringing to mind a blue-purple sock puppet in general aspect. As seen in the photo above, the upper lip is often much REDUCED and the broad lower lip may have coloration patterns that act as NECTAR GUIDES. The CALYX can vary from two-lipped to regular and is often a more reliable character for keying purposes because the petals fall off quickly as the fruit develops (Michigan Flora). The flowers have 2 or 4 EPIPETALOUS STAMENS. The ovary is DEEPLY LOBED and looks like a 4-pack of hot cross buns when views from above. The ovary lobes develop into 4 NUTLETS.

The inflorescence is either a terminal spike, as in bugle weed (Ajuga reptans), or a +/- tight axillary or terminal cluster of flowers, as in wild basil (Clinopodium vulgare), bee balms/ bergamots (e.g. Monarda fistulosa), and mint (Mentha arvensis). Mint flowers are most often purple or white, or some combination of the two.

One of the easiest ways to tell a member of the mint family is to crush a leaf and take a whiff. The stems and flower parts of many species are dotted with resin glands that seep aromatic oils, making them pleasant additions to your garden, your tea cup, or your kitty’s diet (catnip, Nepeta spp). Some specialist bees visit mints to harvest oils, as well as nectar and pollen.

Many mints appear as cultivars in flower gardens, including Salvia’s, bee balms, spearmint, and lemon balm.

WEEDY OHIO MINTSThis is arguably the most abundant mint in Ohio, Glechoma hederacea (gill-over-the-ground or ground ivy). It is a weedy, aromatic, creeping plant with tiny purple flowers. **Know this one for the quiz in class.


The Book Center, University of Maryland Herbaceous Plants of Maryland
Book (The Book Center, University of Maryland)

Info on Talinum

2003-07-03 13:22:27 by pro

Information I gleaned from the USDA plant database: plants.usda.gov/index.html Enter Scientific Name as Talinum
Talinum Adans. - gives you all varieties and maps of where they are present - click on a map to get information for that variety
- Talinum calycinum or parviflorum - most common varieties present in the central states from Texas to Minnesota/Nebraska.
- all varieties native to U.S.
Some common names:
Fameflower
Sunbright
Jewels of Opar (not common but a cool name, no?)
- Herbaceous Perennial, Shrub or Subshrub
- Native to the United States
- Talinum calycinum had a botanical illustration which showed a rhizhome (like an iris)
- Purslane family like Lewisia and Portulaca
- I doubt it is invasive. As a...


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