Pycnanthemum muticum (Blunt Mountainmint)



Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York. Vol. 3: 145. Provided by Kentucky Native Plant Society. Scanned by Omnitek Inc

Where Commonly Found: Ledges, balds, woodlands and fields. CT, MA, ME (extinct in southernmost county), NH, NY (rare in a few counties) and VT (rare in south VT).  DO NOT COLLECT IN COUNTIES WHERE RARE, check BONAP map, see below.

How to Identify:
(For unfamiliar words: Wikipedia Glossary of Botanical Terms).
Go Botany Key for Pycnanthemum muticum.
Missouri Botanical Garden’s description of Pycnanthemum muticum.  Click on more images.

Flower Color:  White to Pink, Purple-spotted
Flower Type: Bi-lateral,
dense terminal and axillary clusters about 1/2″ wide with conspicuous silvery, showy bracts beneath the flowers.  Flowers are two-lipped and tubular, occurring in dense, up to 50 flowers, flat-topped terminal, and sometimes axillary, clusters.
Flower Time:  July – September
Leaf Arrangement:  Opposite with 1/8″ or less petiole, nearly sessile.  Branched, square, hairy stem.  (Pycnanthemum tenufolium stem’s are hairless, a good distinguishing factor.)
Leaf Type:  Simple, ovate to ovate-lanceolate, dark green leaves, pointed, up to 3″ long and less than 3 times as long as wide, rounded to heart-shape bases, margin is toothed.  Leaves and are finely hairy on the underside, stems are hairy.  Strong spearmint odor when bruised.
Height:  1′-3′
Seed Collection:  Capsule-like fruit, less than 1/16″ long.

Attracts:  Bees, Butterflies
Use:  Naturalizing
Light:  Full Sun to Part Shade
Hardiness Zone:  4-8  USDA Zone Map
Soils:  Medium
Notes:  Pynanthemum muticum is easily grown in moist to well-drained soils and will spread somewhat aggressively through rhizomes, though this can be controlled with annual root pruning in the spring if desired.  Showy, long flowering, distinct spearmint scent when leaves are crushed.  Leaves can be used to make a mild tea.
Native to CT, NH, and MA, EXTINCT IN ME  (in southernmost county), RARE IN VT and NY. DO NOT COLLECT IN WHERE RARE, check BONAP map. Also rare in most states east of the Mississippi, but native and present in some. Biota of North America Program (BONAP) – North American Plant Atlas (NAPA).

Requested by Edgewood Nursery.

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: