Photos: Harley, R.

Photos: Harley, R.

Photos: Harley, R.

Photos: Harley, R.

Photo: Harley, R.


VII. Subfam. Nepetoideae (Dumort.) Luerss. (1882).

VII. 3. Tribe Ocimeae Dumort. (1829).

VII. 3. C. Subtribe Hyptidinae Endlicher (1838).


Shrubs, subshrubs, often geoxylic, or annual to perennial herbs, strongly aromatic to odourless; leaves simple to pinnatifid or subdigitate; inflorescence thyrsoid, cymes lax or congested, pedunculate to sessile, often forming involucrate capitula, these sometimes in paniculate synflorescences, or cymes congested into spiciform or head-like thyrses, or sessile or subsessile in axils of leaf-like bracts; bracts usually inconspicuous to leaf-like and sometimes coloured; bracteoles as bracts; flowers pedicellate to sessile; calyx tubular to infundibuliform, actinomorphic to zygomorphic, rarely 2-lipped, 5-lobed, rarely sinuses appendaged and appearing 10 lobed, lobes sometimes obsolete, lobes usually equal, deltoid to subulate or filiform, rarely uncinate, erect to spreading or connivent in fruit, tube sometimes curved or sigmoid with deflexed throat, especially in fruit, often accrescent, sometimes annulate within; corolla strongly 2-lipped, 5-lobed (2/3), white or cream to lilac, pink or bluish purple, rarely red, posterior lip erect, anterior lip apiculate or rounded, rarely explosive pollination mechanism non-functional with lip cochleariform, corolla-tube infundibuliform to tubular, sometimes long and slender; stamens exserted from tube, filaments hairy to glabrous; style with stylopodium absent or present; disc weakly 4-lobed; nutlets 4 (or 1-2), flattened to ovoid, apex rounded to apiculate or toothed or comose, paired aerenchymatous appendages rarely present on dorsal surface of nutlet, mucilaginous or not.  2n = 16, 28, 30, 32, 40-60, 64, 96.  About 280 species, mostly tropical and subtropical savannas, sometimes in humid areas, almost entirely New World, from southern U.S.A. to Caribbean and S to Argentina and Peru, a few species extending into Old World.  About 26 sections currently recognized (Harley, ined), based partly on those of Epling (1949).


Native to:

22 West Tropical Africa
23 West-Central Tropical Africa
24 Northeast Tropical Africa
25 East Tropical Africa
26 South Tropical Africa
27 Southern Africa
29 Western Indian Ocean
36 China
38 Eastern Asia
40 Indian Subcontinent
41 Indo-China
42 Malesia
43 Papuasia
50 Australia
60 Southwestern Pacific
61 South-Central Pacific
62 Northwestern Pacific
63 North-Central Pacific
76 Southwestern U.S.A.
77 South-Central U.S.A.
78 Southeastern U.S.A.
79 Mexico
80 Central America
81 Caribbean
82 Northern South America
83 Western South America
84 Brazil
85 Southern South America

Introduced to:

21 Macaronesia
28 Middle Atlantic Ocean


Mesosphaerum P.Browne, Civ. Nat. Hist. Jamaica: 257 (1756).

Condea Adans., Fam. Pl. 2: 504 (1763).

Brotera Spreng., Bot. Gart. Halle, Nachr. 1: 15 (1801).

Hypothronia Schrank, Syll. Pl. Nov. 1: 85 (1824).

Gnoteris Raf., Sylva Tellur.: 76 (1838).

Schaueria Hassk., Flora 25(2 Beibl.): 25 (1842). 


Hyptis Jacq., Collectanea. 1: 101, 103 (1786) [1787], nom. cons.; Epling, Rev. del Mus. La Plata, Bot. 7: 1-497. (1949), rev.


Species found in RBG Kew living collections

1976-3733 Hyptis brevipes Poit. N PALR 119 F JOD T3 BENCH3
1992-1678 Hyptis capitata Jacq.  SWEY  F JOD SEED 
1992-1676 Hyptis delicatula Harley  HRLE  F JOD SEED 
1992-1677 Hyptis dilitata  HRLE   JOD SEED 
1991-1139 Hyptis eriocephala Benth. N SOLO 9852 F JOD SEED T3
1976-3058 Hyptis floribunda Briq. N HRLE  F JOD T3 BENCH3
1974-1728 Hyptis fruticosa Salzm.ex Benth. N HRLE 16403 F JOD T3 
1987-2000 Hyptis multibracteata Benth. N HRLE sn F JOD T3 FLOOR
1989-3390 Hyptis mutabilis (L.C.Rich.) Briq. N HRLE  F JOD T3 
1975-4841 Hyptis mutabilis (L.C.Rich.) Briq. N HRLE  F JOD T3 BENCH3
1989-1533 Hyptis pachycephala Epling N HRLE  F TRO_N MIC3 
1992-2073 Hyptis pachycephala Epling N HRLE  F JOD SEED 
1990-132 Hyptis pectinata (L.) Poit.  FREI  F JOD  
1979-1636 Hyptis pectinata (L.) Poit.  AARB  F JOD T3 
1991-1732 Hyptis ramosa Pohl ex Benth. N HRLE  F JOD  
1975-4875 Hyptis rhomboidea Mart.& Galeotti N HRLE 4355 F JOD T3 BENCH2
1989-3391 Hyptis sinuata Pohl ex Benth. N HRLE  F JOD  
1991-1550 Hyptis sinuata Pohl ex Benth. N HRLE  F JOD T3 
2007-1605 Hyptis spicigera N SNGF   TRO_N 14 
1991-1549 Hyptis umbrosa Salzm.ex Benth.  HRRP   JOD  
1980-1548 Hyptis urticoides Kunth N MAYO 49 F JOD

Image resource

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew