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Monarda citriodora - Cerv. ex Lag.
                 
Common Name Lemon Bergamot, Lemon beebalm. Lemon Mint
Family Lamiaceae or Labiatae
USDA hardiness 5-9
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Limestone barrens and slopes[43]. Prairies, savannahs and roadsides in Texas[274].
Range Central and Southern N. America to Mexico.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun

Summary
Bloom Color: Pink. Main Bloom Time: Early summer, Late spring, Mid summer. Form: Upright or erect.

Monarda citriodora Lemon Bergamot, Lemon beebalm. Lemon Mint


www.flickr.com/photos/dawilson
Monarda citriodora Lemon Bergamot, Lemon beebalm. Lemon Mint
www.flickr.com/photos/matthigh
   
Physical Characteristics
 icon of manicon of flower
Monarda citriodora is a ANNUAL/PERENNIAL growing to 0.6 m (2ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6. It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.The plant is self-fertile.
It is noted for attracting wildlife.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Synonyms
Habitats
 Cultivated Beds;
Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Condiment;  Tea.

Leaves - raw or cooked. They are used as a flavouring in salads and cooked foods[46, 105, 161, K] and also as a tea[183]. They have a pleasant lemon flavour[238].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.



None known
Other Uses
Essential;  Repellent.

An essential oil in the leaves contains a phenol and a citral[4]. No more information is given, though the oil is likely to have medicinal activity and perhaps be suitable for perfumery etc[K]. The essential oil citronellal, used as an insect repellent and in perfumery, is obtained from this plant[274].
Cultivation details
Landscape Uses:Border, Massing, Specimen. An easily grown plant, succeeding in ordinary garden soil so long as it is not too dry[1]. Requires a moist soil and a sunny position[1, 200]. Likes some shade. Prefers a sandy rather acidic soil[200]. This species is closely related to M. pectinata[235]. Said to be a perennial in some books and an annual in others, it has acted as an annual with us so far[K]. A good bee plant[200]. Subject to mildew in dry summers[200]. Special Features: Attracts birds, North American native, Edible, Fragrant foliage, Attracts butterflies.
Propagation
Seed - sow mid to late spring in a cold frame. Germination usually takes place within 10 - 40 days at 20°c. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer. The seed can also be sown in situ in late summer in areas where the winters are not too severe and will produce larger plants. Cuttings of soft basal shoots in spring. Harvest the shoots with plenty of underground stem when they are about 8 - 10cm above the ground. Pot them up into individual pots and keep them in light shade in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the summer. Division in spring or autumn.
Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Monarda clinopodiaWhite Basil-Balm, White bergamot10
Monarda didymaBergamot, Scarlet beebalm, Horsemint, Oswego Tea, Bee Balm32
Monarda fistulosaWild Bergamot, Mintleaf bergamot, Wild Bee-Balm, Lupine32
Monarda menthifoliaMint-Leaved Bergamot, Mintleaf bergamot12
Monarda pectinataPlains Lemon Monarda, Pony beebalm12
Monarda punctataHorse Mint, Spotted beebalm13
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Expert comment
 
Author
Cerv. ex Lag.
Botanical References
43200
Links / References
For a list of references used on this page please go here
Readers comment
 
Daniel L.
A potted Monarda citriodora flowering on a Tel Aviv metropolitan area balcony. May 24 2012 12:00AM
Monarda citriodora was not known until now to the Israeli gardening community, but when I was offered a small quantity of seeds in a seed barter last Winter, I immediately accepted after seeing photos of this plant on the Web. Germination was rather quick in early Spring, and initial growth was rapid too. Now, ~3 months later, the plants are developing their impressive flowering spikes. There is absolutely nothing lemony about these plants. The leaves have no fragrance when whole, but their taste is exceedingly pungent, with overtones of Thymol and rather reminiscent of Ajowan seeds! My gut feeling is that this Texan weed is going to achieve easy popularity around here, and may elicit R&D interest on behalf of the cut flower market.
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Subject : Monarda citriodora  
 

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