Hardy, summer-blooming, native perennial
Description: Unique flowering stems bear clusters of small, creamy yellow, purple-spotted flowers with pink to lavender to cream-colored, leaf-like bracts; very aromatic foliage
Habit: Grows to two feet tall and spreads by runners to form large clumps; not very aggressive
Culture: Prefers full sun to light shade in dry to average, well-drained soils
Hardiness: Cold hardy to USDA Zone 3
Native to the Eastern United States, this member of the mint family was included in Philadelphia nurseryman Bernard McMahon's The American Gardener’s Calendar, 1806, as "Yellow-flowered Monarda or Horse-mint," and the naturalist John Banister, who sent specimens of M. punctata from Virginia to England in 1680, may have been referring to this plant when he wrote: "In our way home the rich low grounds abounds with a kind of wild Balm, which being trampled by our horses as we rode thro it mightly refreshed us with its fragrant scent." Deer tend to avoid this plant’s fragrant foliage and the flowers attract bees and butterflies.