Last updated

Lamium purpureum jamestown1.jpg
Lamium purpureum L.
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Martinov [1] [2]
Type genus
Lamium purpureum, showing the bilaterally symmetrical flower Lamium purpureum Closeup.jpg
Lamium purpureum , showing the bilaterally symmetrical flower
Tetradenia riparia Tetradenia riparia 03.jpg
Tetradenia riparia

The Lamiaceae ( /ˌlmiˈsi.,-/ LAY-mee-AY-see-ee, -eye) [3] or Labiatae are a family of flowering plants commonly known as the mint, deadnettle or sage family. Many of the plants are aromatic in all parts and include widely used culinary herbs like basil, mint, rosemary, sage, savory, marjoram, oregano, hyssop, thyme, lavender, and perilla, as well as other medicinal herbs such as catnip, salvia, bee balm, wild dagga, and oriental motherwort. Some species are shrubs, trees (such as teak), or, rarely, vines. Many members of the family are widely cultivated, not only for their aromatic qualities, but also their ease of cultivation, since they are readily propagated by stem cuttings.[ citation needed ] Besides those grown for their edible leaves, some are grown for decorative foliage. Others are grown for seed, such as Salvia hispanica (chia), or for their edible tubers, such as Plectranthus edulis , Plectranthus esculentus , Plectranthus rotundifolius , and Stachys affinis (Chinese artichoke). Many are also grown ornamentally, notably coleus, Plectranthus , and many Salvia species and hybrids.


The family has a cosmopolitan distribution. [4] The enlarged Lamiaceae contain about 236 genera [5] and have been stated to contain 6,900 [4] to 7,200 [5] species, but the World Checklist lists 7,534. [6] The largest genera are Salvia (900), Scutellaria (360), Stachys (300), Plectranthus (300), Hyptis (280), Teucrium (250), Vitex (250), Thymus (220), and Nepeta (200). [5] Clerodendrum was once a genus of over 400 species, [5] but by 2010, it had been narrowed to about 150. [7]

The family has traditionally been considered closely related to the Verbenaceae; [5] in the 1990s, phylogenetic studies suggested that many genera classified in the Verbenaceae should be classified in the Lamiaceae [8] [9] or to other families in the order Lamiales. [1]

Salvia jurisicii Salvia jurisicii in its native habitat.jpg
Salvia jurisicii

The alternative family name Labiatae refers to the flowers typically having petals fused into an upper lip and a lower lip (labia in Latin). The flowers are bilaterally symmetrical with five united petals and five united sepals. They are usually bisexual and verticillastrate (a flower cluster that looks like a whorl of flowers, but actually consists of two crowded clusters). Although this is still considered an acceptable alternative name, most botanists now use the name Lamiaceae in referring to this family. The leaves emerge oppositely, each pair at right angles to the previous one (decussate) or whorled. The stems are frequently square in cross section, [10] but this is not found in all members of the family, and is sometimes found in other plant families.


Leucas aspera in Hyderabad, India Leucas aspera at Gandipet, Hyderabad, AP W IMG 9054.jpg
Leucas aspera in Hyderabad, India
Orthosiphon thymiflorus flower Orthosiphon pallidus (Jyoti) in Talakona forest, AP W IMG 8284.jpg
Orthosiphon thymiflorus flower
Oregano Origanum vulgare - harilik pune.jpg

The last revision of the entire family was published in 2004. [5] It described and provided keys to 236 genera. These are marked with an asterisk (*) in the list below. A few genera have been established or resurrected since 2004. These are marked with a plus sign (+). Other genera have been synonymised. These are marked with a minus sign (-). The remaining genera in the list are mostly of historical interest only and are from a source that includes such genera without explanation. [11] Few of these are recognized in modern treatments of the family.

Kew Gardens provides a list of genera that includes additional information. [12] A list at the Angiosperm Phylogeny Website is frequently updated. [13]

Recent changes

The circumscription of several genera has changed since 2004. Tsoongia, Paravitex, and Viticipremna have been sunk into synonymy with Vitex. [14] Huxleya has been sunk into Volkameria. [7] Kalaharia, Volkameria, Ovieda, and Tetraclea have been segregated from a formerly polyphyletic Clerodendrum. [7] Rydingia has been separated from Leucas. [15] The remaining Leucas is paraphyletic over four other genera. [16]

Subfamilies and tribes

In 2004, the Lamiaceae were divided into seven subfamilies, plus 10 genera not placed in any of the subfamilies. [5] The unplaced genera are: Tectona , Callicarpa , Hymenopyramis , Petraeovitex , Peronema , Garrettia , Cymaria , Acrymia , Holocheila , and Ombrocharis . The subfamilies are the Symphorematoideae, Viticoideae, Ajugoideae, Prostantheroideae, Nepetoideae, Scutellarioideae, and Lamioideae. The subfamily Viticoideae is probably not monophyletic. [14] The Prostantheroideae and Nepetoideae are divided into tribes. These are shown in the phylogenetic tree below.


Most of the genera of Lamiaceae have never been sampled for DNA for molecular phylogenetic studies. [17] Most of those that have been are included in the following phylogenetic tree. The phylogeny depicted below is based on seven different sources. [5] [9] [7] [14] [18] [19] [20]




Viticoideae  (pro parte) 



Viticoideae  (pro parte) 








































































Related Research Articles

<i>Leonotis</i> Genus of flowering plants

Leonotis is a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae. One species, Leonotis nepetifolia, is native to tropical Africa and southern India. It is naturalized throughout most of the tropics. The other species are endemic to southern + eastern Africa.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Verbenaceae</span> Family of flowering plants comprising vervains

The Verbenaceae, the verbena family or vervain family, is a family of mainly tropical flowering plants. It contains trees, shrubs, and herbs notable for heads, spikes, or clusters of small flowers, many of which have an aromatic smell.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Plantaginaceae</span> Family of flowering plants in the order Lamiales

Plantaginaceae, the plantain family, is a large, diverse family of flowering plants in the order Lamiales that includes common flowers such as snapdragon and foxglove. It is unrelated to the banana-like fruit also called "plantain." In older classifications, Plantaginaceae was the only family of the order Plantaginales, but numerous phylogenetic studies, summarized by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group, have demonstrated that this taxon should be included within Lamiales.

<i>Stachys</i> Genus of plants in the sage family

Stachys is a genus of plants, one of the largest in the mint family Lamiaceae. Estimates of the number of species vary from about 300, to about 450. Stachys is in the subfamily Lamioideae and its type species is Stachys sylvatica. The precise extent of the genus and its relationship to other genera in the subfamily are poorly known.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Phrymaceae</span> Family of flowering plants

Phrymaceae, also known as the lopseed family, is a small family of flowering plants in the order Lamiales. It has a nearly cosmopolitan distribution, but is concentrated in two centers of diversity, one in Australia, the other in western North America. Members of this family occur in diverse habitats, including deserts, river banks and mountains.

<i>Clinopodium</i> Genus of flowering plants

Clinopodium is a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae. It is in the tribe Mentheae of the subfamily Nepetoideae, but little else can be said with certainty about its phylogenetic position.

<i>Volkameria</i> Genus of flowering plants

Volkameria is a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae. It is pantropical in distribution. Many of the species are found in coastal habitats.

<i>Vitex</i> Genus of flowering plants in the sage family Lamiaceae

Vitex is a genus of flowering plants in the sage family Lamiaceae. It has about 250 species. Common names include chaste tree or chastetree, traditionally referring to V. agnus-castus, but often applied to other species, as well.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Rosmarinic acid</span> Chemical compound found in a variety of plants

Rosmarinic acid, named after rosemary, is a polyphenol constituent of many culinary herbs, including rosemary, perilla, sage, mint, and basil.

<i>Clerodendrum</i> Genus of flowering plants

Clerodendrum is a genus of flowering plants formerly placed in the family Verbenaceae, but now considered to belong to the Lamiaceae (mint) family. Its common names include glorybower, bagflower and bleeding-heart. It is currently classified in the subfamily Ajugoideae, being one of several genera transferred from Verbenaceae to Lamiaceae in the 1990s, based on phylogenetic analysis of morphological and molecular data.

<i>Oxera</i> Genus of flowering plants

Oxera is a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae native to Vanuatu and New Caledonia in the western Pacific.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ajugoideae</span> Subfamily of flowering plants in the sage family Lamiaceae

Ajugoideae is subfamily of the family Lamiaceae. The subfamily name of Teucrioideae is a synonym of Ajugoideae.

<i>Clerodendrum quadriloculare</i> Species of plant in the family Lamiaceae

Clerodendrum quadriloculare is a species of flowering plant native to New Guinea and the Philippines. It is one of many species previously included in the family Verbenaceae, but transferred to the Lamiaceae based on molecular studies. The plants produce flowers which look good in a garden, but it can be difficult to eradicate.

<i>Salvia</i> Largest genus of plants in the mint family

Salvia is the largest genus of plants in the sage family Lamiaceae, with nearly 1000 species of shrubs, herbaceous perennials, and annuals. Within the Lamiaceae, Salvia is part of the tribe Mentheae within the subfamily Nepetoideae. One of several genera commonly referred to as sage, it includes two widely used herbs, Salvia officinalis and Salvia rosmarinus.

<i>Rotheca</i> Genus of flowering plants

Rotheca is a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae. Estimates of the number of species in the genus vary from about 35 to as many as 60. Three of the species are native to tropical Asia, with the rest occurring in Sub-Saharan Africa. The type species for the genus is Rotheca serrata. It had originally been named Rotheca ternifolia, but this name is now considered illegitimate.

<i>Vitex rotundifolia</i> Species of vine

Vitex rotundifolia, the roundleaf chastetree or beach vitex, is a species of flowering plant in the sage family Lamiaceae. It is native to seashores throughout the Pacific. Its range includes continents and islands stretching from India east to Hawaii and from Korea south to Australia. This shrub typically grows approximately 1 m in height. It has a sprawling growth habit and produces runners that root regularly at nodes. This rooting pattern allows the plant to spread rapidly. At maturity, V. rotundifolia produces blue-purple flowers that are borne in clusters and ultimately yield small brown-black fruits. Its leaves are rounded at the tips with green upper surfaces and silver lower surfaces. While the plant is a seashore obligate, it grows over a wide latitude range. It has been used for medicinal purposes throughout its native range. More recently, it was imported to the eastern United States where it has become a seashore invasive. Control efforts are presently underway to protect the fragile beach dune ecosystem.

<i>Ovieda</i> Genus of flowering plants

Ovieda is a genus of flowering plant in the family Lamiaceae, first described for modern science in 1753. It contains only one known species, Ovieda spinosa , endemic to the Island of Hispaniola in the West Indies.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Nepetoideae</span> Subfamily of flowering plants in the sage family Lamiaceae

Nepetoideae is a subfamily of plants in the family Lamiaceae.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Lamioideae</span> Subfamily of flowering plants in the sage family Lamiaceae

Lamioideae is a subfamily of plants in the family Lamiaceae.


  1. 1 2 Stevens, P. F. (July 2012). "Lamiales (Lamiaceae Family)". Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. Archived from the original on 21 March 2015. Retrieved 25 March 2015.
  2. Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2009). "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 161 (2): 105–121. doi: 10.1111/j.1095-8339.2009.00996.x .
  3. "Pronunciation of lamiaceae". Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Retrieved 2014-11-25.
  4. 1 2 Heywood, Vernon H.; Brummitt, Richard K.; Seberg, Ole; Culham, Alastair (2007). Flowering Plant Families of the World. Ontario, Canada: Firefly Books. ISBN   978-1-55407-206-4.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Raymond M. Harley, Sandy Atkins, Andrey L. Budantsev, Philip D. Cantino, Barry J. Conn, Renée J. Grayer, Madeline M. Harley, Rogier P.J. de Kok, Tatyana V. Krestovskaja, Ramón Morales, Alan J. Paton, and P. Olof Ryding. 2004. "Labiatae" pages 167-275. In: Klaus Kubitzki (editor) and Joachim W. Kadereit (volume editor). The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants volume VII. Springer-Verlag: Berlin; Heidelberg, Germany. ISBN   978-3-540-40593-1
  6. "World Checklist of Selected Plant Families". Archived from the original on 2017-07-09. Retrieved 2022-02-21.
  7. 1 2 3 4 Yuan, Yao-Wu; Mabberley, David J.; Steane, Dorothy A.; Olmstead, Richard G. (2010). "Further disintegration and redefinition of Clerodendrum (Lamiaceae): Implications for the understanding of the evolution of an intriguing breeding strategy". Taxon. 59 (1): 125–133. doi:10.1002/tax.591013.
  8. Cantino, P.D., Harley, R.M. & Wagstaff, S.J. 1992. Genera of Labiatae: status and classification. Pp. 511-522. In: Raymond M. Harley and Tom Reynolds (editors). Advances in Labiate Science. Richmond, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  9. 1 2 Wagstaff, Steven J.; Hickerson, Laura; Spangler, Russ; Reeves, Patrick A.; Olmstead, Richard G. (1998). "Phylogeny in Labiatae s.l., inferred from cpDNA sequences". Plant Systematics and Evolution. 209 (3–4): 265–274. doi:10.1007/bf00985232. S2CID   601658.
  10. Parnell, J. and Curtis, T. 2012. Webb's An Irish Flora. Cork University Press ISBN   978-185918-4783
  11. "List of genera in Lamiaceae". In: "Lamiaceae". In: "List of families". In: "Families and genera in GRIN. (see External links below)
  12. List of Genera in Lamiaceae. At: Vascular Plant Families and Genera. At: World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. At: Electronic Plant Information Center. At: Website of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. (see External Links below).
  13. "APG list of Lamiaceae genera". Archived from the original on 2022-01-31. Retrieved 2022-02-21.
  14. 1 2 3 Bramley, Gemma L.C.; Forest, Félix; Rogier (2009). "Troublesome tropical mints: re-examining generic limits of Vitex and relations (Lamiaceae) in South East Asia". Taxon. 58 (2): 500–510. doi:10.1002/tax.582014.
  15. Scheen, Anne-Cathrine; Albert, Victor A. (2007). "Nomenclatural and taxonomic changes within the Leucas clade (Lamioideae; Lamiaceae)". Systematics and Geography of Plants. 77 (2): 229–238. JSTOR   20649740.
  16. Scheen, Anne-Cathrine; Albert, Victor A. (2009). "Molecular Phylogenetics of the Leucas Group (Lamioideae; Lamiaceae)". Systematic Botany. 34 (1): 173–181. doi:10.1600/036364409787602366. S2CID   85894904.
  17. Zhao, Fei; Chen, Ya-Ping; Salmaki, Yasaman; Drew, Bryan T.; Wilson, Trevor C.; Scheen, Anne-Cathrine; Celep, Ferhat; Bräuchler, Christian; Bendiksby, Mika; Wang, Qiang; Min, Dao-Zhang; Peng, Hua; Olmstead, Richard G.; Li, Bo; Xiang, Chun-Lei (8 January 2021). "An updated tribal classification of Lamiaceae based on plastome phylogenomics". BMC Biology. 19 (1): 2. doi:10.1186/s12915-020-00931-z. PMC   7796571 . PMID   33419433.
  18. Zhong, Jin-Shun; Li, Jie; Li, Lang; Conran, John G.; Hsi-wen, Li (2010). "Phylogeny of Isodon (Schrad. ex Benth.) Spach (Lamiaceae) and Related Genera Inferred from Nuclear Ribosomal ITS, trnL-trnF Region, and rps16 Intron Sequences and Morphology". Systematic Botany. 35 (1): 207–219. doi:10.1600/036364410790862614. S2CID   54808462.
  19. Walker, Jay B.; Sytsma, Kenneth J. (2007). "Staminal Evolution in the Genus Salvia (Lamiaceae): Molecular Phylogenetic Evidence for Multiple Origins of the Staminal Lever". Annals of Botany. 100 (2): 375–391. doi:10.1093/aob/mcl176. PMC   2735309 . PMID   16926227.
  20. Ryding, P. Olof (2010). "Pericarp structure and phylogeny of tribe Mentheae (Lamiaceae)". Plant Systematics and Evolution. 285 (3–4): 165–175. doi:10.1007/s00606-010-0270-9. S2CID   24076224.