Common name: Peppermint
Mentha x piperita L. APNI*
Description: Herb to 80 cm high, rhizomatous of stoloniferous, frequently rooting at nodes; branches ascending, often tinged purple, glabrous or with a few scattered hairs.
Leaves with lamina ovate, narrow-ovate, rarely elliptic-ovate, 1.5–8 cm long, 1–3 cm wide; apex acute or rarely obtuse; margins toothed; petiole 0–15 mm long.
Inflorescence terminal; clusters dense, many-flowered, subtended by greatly reduced leaf-like bracts. Calyx 10-veined, fused to two-thirds its length, with scattered hairs along medial ridge and often lobes ciliate. Corolla 5–6 mm long, lilac to pink. Anthers included or exserted.
Fruit not developed.
Distribution and occurrence: Naturalized in moist sites. Originated in Eur.
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC, *CT, *ST, *SWS
M. X piperita is a sterile hybrid between M. aquatica L. and M. X spictata L. Two variants of this hybrid (known as nothomorphs) are naturalized in N.S.W.
Text by B. J. Conn
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 3 (1992)
| ||Key to the varieties|| |
|1||Leaves narrow-ovate to elliptic, to 7 cm long; odour pungent, peppermint. Inflorescence cylindrical, spike-like, to 6 cm long, with flower clusters becoming separated. Anthers included.||var. piperita|
|Leaves ovate to broad-ovate, 2–9 cm long; youngest leaves often with a red margin; odour reminiscent of 'Eau de Cologne'. Inflorescence of 1 or more distinct globose clusters, to 2 cm long. Anthers exserted.||var. citrata|
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
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