The mint family in Belgium:
In this project, we will document part of the Lamiaceae (mint family), a species-rich plant family represented all around the world (except Antarctica) with approximately 7000 species.
The plants in this family are mostly herbs and shrubs, sometimes trees and lianas in warmer environments. A typical characteristic is the symmetrical flower whose petals’ form and disposition are such that, with a few exceptions, the flower makes you think of a pair of upper and lower lips. Hence a second valid scientific name: Labiatae, Latin for “with lips”.
Many members of this family are aromatic and hereto thus belong many culinary herbs well-known by us all: mint (Mentha), basil (Ocimum basilicum), oregano and marjoram (Origanum), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), sage (Salvia), savory (Satureja), thyme (Thymus). Others like lavender (Lavandula), Leonotis, lampwick (Phlomis), sage (Salvia), self-heal (Stachys) are used as ornamentals. In the wild in our region, dead-nettles (Lamium) and mints (Mentha) are the most species-rich genera but several other species and genera are to be found a little everywhere in Belgium.
Belgium, Lamiaceae, Herbae, Hortus Botanicus Meise, Botanica.
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