Mentha pulegium L.


Sp. Pl. 577 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Ascending to decumbent herb to c. 50 cm high, sometimes rhizomatous; lower stem prostrate, rooting at the nodes; at least the upper stems villous. Leaves obovate, elliptic or almost orbicular, 6–30 mm long, 4–20 mm wide, variably hirsute to villous, apex obtuse or rounded, margin entire or with small blunt serrations; petiole 1–6 mm long. Flowers in dense many-flowered clusters in axils of distal and often to basal leaves; pedicels much shorter than calyx. Calyx 2–3 mm long, 10-veined, lobes acute to acuminate, anterior pair narrower and often slightly shorter, one-quarter to half as long as tube, hirsute; corolla ciliate, usually pale-mauve to lilac, exceeding calyx by c. 2 mm, lobes 1.5–2 mm long, the posterior one entire or barely emarginate; anthers strongly exserted. Flowers mostly Jan.–Apr.

*CVU, *DunT, *EGU, *GipP, *Glep, *Gold, *GGr, *HNF, *HSF, *MuF, *MuM, *NIS, *OtP, *OtR, *Strz, *VAlp, *VRiv, *VVP, *WaP, *Wim. Also naturalised WA, SA, NSW, Tas. Native to Europe, extending eastwards to Iran. Common on ground prone to seasonal waterlogging, usually in open sites (pasture, grassland etc.). Carr et al. (1992) rated the species as a 'serious' environmental weed of a number of vegetation formations in Victoria.

Source: Conn, B.J. (1999). Lamiaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-08-26

Carr, G.W., Yugovic, J.V. & Robinson, K.E, (1992). Environmental weed invasions in Victoria: Conservation & Management Implications, Dept. of Conservation & Environment, & Ecol. Horticulture .

Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Asteranae
order Lamiales
family Lamiaceae
genus Mentha
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Mentha pulegium in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Mentha pulegium in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Murray Mallee present naturalised
Wimmera present naturalised
Glenelg Plain present naturalised
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Victorian Riverina present naturalised
Murray Fans present naturalised
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present naturalised
Warrnambool Plain present naturalised
Goldfields present naturalised
Central Victorian Uplands present naturalised
Greater Grampians present naturalised
Dundas Tablelands present naturalised
Northern Inland Slopes present naturalised
East Gippsland Uplands present naturalised
Highlands-Southern Fall present naturalised
Highlands-Northern Fall present naturalised
Otway Ranges present introduced
Strzelecki Ranges present naturalised
Victorian Alps present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory