Hedeoma nana (Torr.) Briq.
Family: Lamiaceae
mock-pennyroyal,  more...
[Hedeoma dentata var. nana ,  more]
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Max Licher  
Wiggins 1964, Jepson 1993, Kearney and Peebles 1969, Allred and Ivey 2012, Heil et al. 2013, Correll and Johnston 1970
Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Perennial herb (occasionally annual), 10-25 cm tall, from a woody taproot; stems many, ascending to slightly decumbent, sometimes slightly woody near the base; herbage sometimes red- or purple-tinged, and usually covered with white, downwardly curving hairs. Leaves: Opposite, on slender petioles, 1-3 mm long; blades ovate to elliptic or sometimes rhomboidal-ovate, 5-10 mm long and 2-6 mm wide, with entire or minutely denticulate margins; upper surface dark green and lower surface paler, somewhat veiny, finely punctate-glandular. Flowers: Blue-purple or pinkish, in few-flowered verticels at leaf axils, each flower on a pedicel 1-5 mm long; calyx tube mostly 2-3 mm long, finely ribbed and hispidulous, distinctly swollen near the base at maturity; calyx teeth reddish, the upper three ovate-subulate, 1 mm long, slightly curved outward, and the lower pair narrowly subulate, 2 mm long, curved inward; corolla bilabiate, rose-purple, often with darker spots and streaks in lower lip, the corolla tube about equaling the calyx length, hispidulous on the outside. Fruits: Nutlets 4, oblong, 1 mm long, brown. Ecology: Found in rock crevices, rocky slopes, exposed ridges, and at the base of rocks, including limestone, from 500-7,500 ft (152-2286 m); flowers March-October. Distribution: s CA, s UT, AZ, NM, s TX; south to c MEX. Notes: H. nana is a highly variable species and often is hard to tell apart from other Hedeoma spp. Distinguished by being an erect perennial, often with many stems from the base forming loose to dense bunches; the foliage has little to no smell of mint; the leaves are untoothed and broadly elliptical to ovate; and the calyx teeth are spreading at maturity with the upper teeth reflexed, making the calyx bilabiate wih hairs not protruding between calyx teeth. Similar to H. drummondii but that speces has a peppermint smell and the calyx narrows considerably toward the apex, with the teeth converging when in fruit. There are three subspecies with overlapping distribution. The base description generally fits for subsp. nana which is the most widespread and common. Subsp. californica is often found on limestone outcrops and can be distinguished by its closely tufted (bunched) stems which are sparingly hairy near the tips and nearly hairless near the base; small leaves about 5 mm long; and deciduous basal leaves . Ssp. macrocalyx is told apart from subsp. nana by having persistent basal leaves that are 10-15 mm long and purplish beneath; a larger calyx tube 3.5-4.5 mm long, and a corolla tube 5-6 mm long, with the limb (wider 2-lipped part of the corolla) distinctly exceeding the calyx. Ethnobotany: Used ceremonially; taken as a cathartic; taken for indigestion; made into tea; the leaves were used as flavoring; and used as a hair and body wash. Etymology: Hedeoma is from the Greek hedus, sweet, and osme, odor, an ancient name for a strongly aromatic mint; nana comes from the Greek nannos, dwarf. Synonyms: Hedeoma nanum Editor: SBuckley 2010, FSCoburn 2015, AHazelton 2017
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Max Licher  
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Max Licher  
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Max Licher  
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Liz Makings  
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Liz Makings  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Patrick Alexander  
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Eugene, (Gene) Sturla  
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Ana L. Reina-Guerrero  
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Jillian Cowles  
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