White Flowered Forbs

White Flowered Forbs
African rue
Broadleaved pepperweed
Field bindweed
Hary whitetop
Horehound
Lens-podded hoarycress
Onionweed
Oxeye daisy
Poison hemlock
White clover
White sweetclover
Whitetop

 

Horehound
Marrubium vulgare L. (Mint family, Lamiaceae)
 

Description

Horehound is an upright bushy, cool-season, perennial forb or subshrub, 9 to 30 inches tall. It has dense, white woolly 4-angled stems branching from a somewhat woody base. Both the stems and leaves are very aromatic and have a bitter taste.

Leaves: The opposite leaves are petioled 3/16 to 1-15/16 inches long, round to oval in outline, corrugated (wrinkled), 9/16 to 1-15/16 inch long and wide; pale green above and white woolly beneath,
with coarsely-toothed margins.

Flowers: Flowers March to October; flowers small, white, tubular, 1/4 to 5/16 inch long, crowded into very dense, compact, round clusters around the stem in the leaf axil; flower clusters also occur at the ends of all the branches, and often extend for more than a foot on the stem; calyx is also tubular, with 10 spinelike teeth which curve downward and are hook tipped in age, calyx persistent, and encloses the 4-parted fruits.

Fruit: Fruit is a burlike, 4-parted nutlet, egg shaped, brown or dark gray, about 1/12 inch long, and somewhat 3-angled, surface has scattered dark granules; 1 seed per nutlet, less than 1/16 inch long.

Habitat

Cultivated and disturbed or degraded sites in deserts, uplands, mountains, and riparian habitats within elevations that generally range below 8,500 feet.

Propagation/Phenology

Reproduces by seed.

Comments

Native to Europe; although somewhat bitter and possessing a unique, pungent flavor, the fresh or dried leaves are edible and can be used as a seasoning or flavoring, made into pleasant tasting and medicinal tea. Horehound is often included in herbal cough drops. This species generally occurs as a weed in wildland areas of the Southwestern Region rather than as an invasive plant.

Collage of images of Horehound

 

 
Forest Service Shield
Invasive plants and weeds of the national forests and grasslands in the southwestern region
Horehound plants Horehound flowers and foliage Horehound flowers and foliage Horehound flowers and foliage