Latin: Monarda fistulosa L.
- Wild bergamot
- Wild horsemint
Herbaceous perennial, fragrant leaves, rose-purple to lavender, two-lipped, tubular flowers.
4 cm (1.5 in.) long; July to August. The flowers are very attractive to bees and hummingbirds.
5-10 cm (2 to 4 in.) long.
60-120 cm (2 to 4 ft.) tall.
Dry soils, usually in dry woods, thickets, and forest clearings.
North America, east of the Rockies
The leaves of the plant have been used traditionally to make a strongly mint flavored tea, and it is supposed to have a number of medicinal qualities, 1 teaspoon of dried leaves to 8 ounces of boiling water. The leaves can be added fresh, in small quantities, to salad, desserts and drinks. Wild bergamot was often employed medicinally, for treatment of the digestive system and burns. It is still sometimes used in modern herbalism. Also, the leaves have been used as an insect repellent.