by Stephen Mifsud
   3 Dec 2023      ()
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Mentha pulegium   (Peppermint)

Mentha pulegium  (LAMIACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands after year 2000.

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Profile Date Oct-2006 (taxon update: Oct-2006)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (2022). Mentha pulegium - datasheet created on Oct-2006. Retrieved from on 03-Dec-2023

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Mentha pulegiumL.
Published in Sp. Pl. : 577 (1753)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Mentha exigua L.
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life] []

Plant Family :

Lamiaceae Lindl. (=Labiatae) (The Mint Family)
36 species from the Lamiaceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Peppermint, Pennroyal Mint, European Pennyroyal

Maltese name(s) :


Status for Malta :

Indigenous. Present on the Maltese islands before man

Frequency :

Very Common     Common    Frequent    Scarce     Rare    Very rare    Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: HEMICRYPTOPHYTE ( prostate plants with flowers close to the ground )
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection :

Not legally protected till the last update of this website (2/Mar/2022)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :

April – July

Colour of Flowers:



Mildy toxic, can cause adverse conditions if consumed in large quantities

Name Derivation :

Mentha: A name for an unfortunate Greek nymph named Minthe who got herself turned into a mint plant, and a genus of culinary herbs named after her, this is one of the oldest plant names still in use. (Greek origin ); 2 = Further Info: [1], [2].
pulegium: From the Latin word 'pulex', which means a flea-repellent. (Latin origin );

Planting in rural areas :

Can be planted in rural areas according to ERA Guidelines

Description, Habitat and Distribution
Habitat in Europe: Data will be available in the next update of this website.
Preferred habitat in Malta: Valley bottoms, damp shady places, cultivated or waste places near dams or watercourses.
Botanical Description: Subglabrous to tomentose perennial 10-40 cm, with pungent scent; stems procumbent to ascending. Leaves 8-30 x 4-12 mm, narrowly elliptical, attenuate at base, rarely suborbicular, shortly petiolate, entire or with up to 6 teeth on each side, hairy at least beneath. Bracts like the leaves, but usually smaller. Calyx (2-)2.5-3 mm; teeth ciliate, the lower subulate, the upper shorter and wider. Corolla (4-)4.5-6 mm, lilac. Stamens exserted or included; fertile anthers 0.4 mm. Nutlets 0.75 mm, pale brown.
Chromosome number: 2n=20
Distributional range: S., W. & C. Europe, northwards to Ireland and C. Poland, and extending to W. & S. Ukraine.

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):
Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):
All except Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia and former USSR, N B C E Svalbard archipelago, Sweden
Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(from Euro+Med Checklist, 2019)
  Country codes  
AE(G) Ag Al Au Az Be Bl Br Bu By Ca Co Cr Cy Cz Eg Ga Ge Gr Hb He Ho Hs Hu IJ It Ju Li LS Lu Ma Md Po Rf(CS S) Rm Sa Si Tcs Tn Tu(A E) Uk(K U)

Links & Further literature (0 papers)

Google Web

Google Images

Google Scholar

Research Gate




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



World Flora Online

Plants of the World Online

Vienna Virt. Herb.

RBGE Herbarium

KEW Herbarium




Kindly Email if there are papers and publications about local studies or information about this species to be included in the list above.

Species Images (10 images)
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-0.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-1.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-2.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-3.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-4.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-5.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-6.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-7.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-8.
   Mentha pulegium   -   Image Code: MNTPL-9.

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