Melissa officinalis
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Melissa officinalis

lemon mint
lemon balm
bee balm
sweet balm

  family lamiaceae 
  genus melissa 

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Identification
Genus  Melissa Species  officinalis Variety  Cultivar  Common names  lemon mint   lemon balm   bee balm   sweet balm Family  LAMIACEAE Specimen number  S11263 Data source  CrscntBlm;HtZn p141;MedPl p111;Frgnt p174
 
Life cycle
Life form  Terrestrial Life cycle  Various Life span    Annual cycle  Not applicable Stature  Herb Growth form  Not applicable Growth habit  Various Overall height  1' - 2' Overall spread   
 
Climate
Sunshine  Full sun to light shade Water  Moist, well drained Optimal soil texture  Various Acceptable soil pH  Neutral USDA hardiness  USDA zones 04a-09b AHS heat zones  Heat zones 12-01 Sunset climate zones  Not classified
 
Garden
Suitable for gardens  yes Nursery  Hiro's friend Compost  no Size at acquisition  4 inch pot Garden location  Herb garden Garden notes  Beekeepers can use this plant to attract bees. Melissa officinalis has mild spicy leaves. Lemon mint (also known as lemon balm, bee balm or sweet balm) can survive very cold winters with annual averages as low as -30 Fahrenheit. This plant needs summer days with high heat. Full sun to light shade is needed for this species to do its best. It likes moist, well drained soils.
 
Special qualities
Tolerates drought  no Tolerates high humidity  no Tolerates seaside conditions  no Insect resistant  no Disease resistant  no Deer resistant  no Best uses    Symbiosis  Attracts butterflies  no Attracts hummingbirds  no Autumn foliage  no Colorful berries  no Desirable qualities  Attracts bees Other interest    Other interest color  Other interest period   
 
Adverse factors
Common pests  Poisonous parts  Poisonous indications  Internal poison  no Dermatologic poison  no Livestock poison  no Mechanical injury  no Hay fever pollen    Hay fever season    Adverse qualities   
 
Herbal medicine
Medicinal properties  antispasmodic   diaphoretic   carminative   antiviral   nerve tonic   antithyroid   relaxant Medicinal parts  Aerial parts   Essential oil Has medicinal uses  yes Do not self-administer  no Do no use if pregnant  no Legally restricted  no Toxicity precautions  Do not take essential oil internally without professional guidance. Medicinal notes  Melissa officinalis is most commonly used cooked. Lemon mint (sometimes called lemon balm, bee balm or sweet balm) has too many possible beneficial herbal uses to fully enumerate. A few of its uses include: as an antispasmodic, as a diaphoretic, as a carminative and as an antiviral. See the medicinal properties section for the full list. The aerial parts and the essential oil are used in herbal preparations. Do not take essential oil internally without professional guidance.
 
Traditional uses
Parts used  Traditional uses  Contemporary uses  Fragrance  aromatic leaves. hot,dry,lemon scented Fragrance parts  Leaves Fragrance intensity  Mild Fragrance category  Spicy Dye parts  Dye color 
 
Cultivation
Propagule  Division Pollination method    Planting style    Crop spacing    Row spacing    Cold frame  Planting period    Harvesting period    Frost tolerance    Heat requirement    Fertilizer  Typical Time to harvest 
 
Nutrition
Is edible  yes Culinary uses  Cooked Nutritional value  Edible parts  Leaves Description of edible parts Flavor / texture 
 
Horticulture
Horticulture notes  Melissa officinalis is typically propagated by division.
 
Herbarium
Tag needs printing  no Collection notes  Flowers: Melissa officinalis has small flowers.

Page 2963 of 4998

Last reviewed November 01, 2004   

 

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