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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Mentha \Men"tha\, n. [L. See Mint the plant.] (Bot.) A widely distributed genus of fragrant herbs, including the peppermint, spearmint, etc. The plants have small flowers, usually arranged in dense axillary clusters.


n. (context botany English) Any of the mint genus ''Mentha'', mints and similar species.


Mentha (also known as mint, from Greekmíntha, Linear Bmi-ta) is a genus of plants in the family Lamiaceae (mint family). The species is not clearly distinct, with 13 to 18 variations estimated. Hybridization between some of the species occur naturally. Many other hybrids, as well as numerous cultivars, are known.

The genus has a subcosmopolitan distribution across Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, and North America.

Mints are aromatic, almost exclusively perennial, rarely annual, herbs. They have wide-spreading underground and overground stolons and erect, square, branched stems. The leaves are arranged in opposite pairs, from oblong to lanceolate, often downy, and with a serrated margin. Leaf colors range from dark green and gray-green to purple, blue, and sometimes pale yellow. The flowers are white to purple and produced in false whorls called verticillasters. The corolla is two-lipped with four subequal lobes, the upper lobe usually the largest. The fruit is a nutlet, containing one to four seeds.

While the species that make up the Mentha genus are widely distributed and can be found in many environments, most grow best in wet environments and moist soils. Mints will grow 10–120 cm tall and can spread over an indeterminate area. Due to their tendency to spread unchecked, some mints are considered invasive.

Usage examples of "mentha".

I was thinking perhaps some Ashtan steak, sauteed Riparian squid with klavva nut filling, orange-glazed mentha root with Etarian coffee, and something as decadent as a Sassan God for dessert might be in order.

To know fully the mentha family of plants, he must know both the characteristic qualities of the family and also those of the larger genus labiatae.