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Monarda fistulosa - L.

Common Name Wild Bergamot, Mintleaf bergamot, Wild Bee-Balm, Lupine
Family Lamiaceae or Labiatae
USDA hardiness 4-10
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Dry thickets, clearings and woodland edges[43].
Range North-eastern N. America - Quebec to Minnesota, south to Texas.
Edibility Rating  
Other Uses  
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating  
Care
Fully Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Monarda fistulosa Wild Bergamot, Mintleaf bergamot, Wild Bee-Balm, Lupine


www.epa.gov
Monarda fistulosa Wild Bergamot, Mintleaf bergamot, Wild Bee-Balm, Lupine
biolib.de

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Summary

Bloom Color: Lavender, Pink. Main Bloom Time: Late summer, Mid summer. Form: Upright or erect.


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Monarda fistulosa is a PERENNIAL growing to 1.5 m (5ft) by 0.5 m (1ft 8in) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 4 and is not frost tender. It is in flower in July, and the seeds ripen in August. The species is hermaphrodite (has 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 and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.

Synonyms

Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers;  Leaves.
Edible Uses: Condiment;  Tea.

Leaves - raw or cooked. The entire plant above ground level can be used as a potherb[183], though it is rather aromatic. It is also used as a flavouring in salads and cooked foods[46, 105, 183, 213]. The flowers make an attractive edible garnish in salads[183]. The fresh or dried leaves are brewed into a refreshing aromatic tea[183, 257].

Medicinal Uses



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Carminative;  Diaphoretic;  Diuretic;  Pectoral;  Stimulant.

Wild bergamot was often employed medicinally by several native North American Indian tribes who used it to treat a variety of complaints, but especially those connected with the digestive system[257]. It is still sometimes used in modern herbalism. The leaves and flowering stems are carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic and stimulant[4, 222]. An infusion is used internally in the treatment of colds, catarrh, headaches, gastric disorders, aching kidneys, to reduce low fevers and soothe sore throats[213, 238, 257]. Externally, it is applied as a poultice to skin eruptions, cuts etc and as a wash for sore eyes[238, 257]. The leaves can be harvested before the plant flowers, or they can be harvested with the flowering stems. They can be used fresh or dried[238]. The plant contains the essential oil 'bergamot oil' which can be inhaled to treat bronchial complaints[213]. The leaves also contain 'thymol', an essential oil that can be used to expel gas from the digestive tract[213].

Other Uses

Repellent.

The leaves have been used as an insect repellent[257].

Cultivation details

Landscape Uses:Massing. Easily grown in ordinary garden soil so long as it is not too dry[1, 200]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Requires a moist soil and a sunny position[1, 200], though it also succeeds in light shade[187]. This species thrives when grown in a dry soil[233, 238, K]. It prefers alkaline soil conditions[238]. Plants are hardy to at least -25°c[187]. A very ornamental plant, there are several named varieties[1, 233]. A good bee plant[200]. Subject to mildew in dry summers[200]. Special Features:Attracts birds, North American native, Attracts butterflies, Suitable for cut flowers, Attractive flowers or blooms.

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. Very easy, large divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is better to pot up the smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a cold frame until they are well established before planting them out in late spring or early summer.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Monarda citriodoraLemon Bergamot, Lemon beebalm. Lemon Mint20
Monarda clinopodiaWhite Basil-Balm, White bergamot10
Monarda didymaBergamot, Scarlet beebalm, Horsemint, Oswego Tea, Bee Balm32
Monarda menthifoliaMint-Leaved Bergamot, Mintleaf bergamot12
Monarda pectinataPlains Lemon Monarda, Pony beebalm12
Monarda punctataHorse Mint, Spotted beebalm13

 

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Botanical References

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Subject : Monarda fistulosa  
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