Pycnanthemum virginianum is native to Illinois. Its common name of mountain mint is somewhat misleading since the plant typically occurs in moist soils in wet meadows, swamps and along streams and ponds. An erect, many-branched, herbaceous perennial that grows 2-3' tall and features narrow, toothless, tapering leaves and profuse, somewhat flat-topped, terminal clusters of small, white, 2-lipped flowers which bloom in mid to late summer. All parts of the plant emit a strong, mint-like aroma when crushed. Pycnanthemums have been used in teas.
The flowers will be white to shades of light purple, some with purple spots. Pycnanthemum means "densely flowered," an attribute that allows Mountain Mint to accommodate many pollinators at once. The light green foliage of all Mountain Mint species is visually pleasing, too, making it a nice garden choice even when not flowering.
One of the best plants for attracting pollinators!
Interesting plant for the herb garden, border, naturalized area or meadow. Also may be grown in open areas near ponds and streams.