Clinopodium ashei

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Clinopodium ashei
Calamintha ashei Kaitlin Griffith 3.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida - Dicotyledons
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae ⁄ Labiatae
Genus: Clinopodium
Species: C. ashei
Binomial name
Clinopodium ashei
(Weath.) Shinners
Dist CALA ASHE.jpg
Natural range of Clinopodium ashei from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Common names: Ashe's calamint; Ashe's savory; Ohoopee Dunes wild basil

Taxonomic notes

Synonyms: Calamintha ashei (Weatherby) Shinners; Satureja ashei Weatherby

Varieties: none


C. ashei is a perennial, aromatic shrub with linear leaves arranged in opposite clusters.[1] [2] The bisexual flowers are pinkish-purple.[2][3]




C. ashei is endemic to the Florida central highlands and southeastern Georgia, it occurs in pine-oak scrub ridges, and in Ceratiola scrubs.[2][4] It thrives in open areas of pine scrubs and disturbed sites such as abandoned fields, roadsides, and fire lanes.[2][5] Associated species include Osmanthus megacarpus, Ilex cumulicola and, Ceratiola ericoides.[4]

In order to reduce competition, C. ashei releases allelopathic compounds that prevent germination of other species' seeds, creating un-vegetated patches of sand.[6]


Flowers and fruits have been observed January through June.[4]

Fire ecology

Fire has been observed to kill all adult C. ashei individuals.[7] Seedling frequency increases around ten months post-fire, with seedling probably established from seeds stored in a seed bank due to the absence of adult individuals.[7]


The following Hymenoptera families and species were observed visiting flowers of Calamintha ashei at Archbold Biological Station:[8]

Apidae: Apis mellifera, Bombus impatiens, Epeolus erigeronis, Epeolus zonatus

Halictidae: Agapostemon splendens, Augochlorella aurata, Augochloropsis sumptuosa, Halictus poeyi, Lasioglossum nymphalis, L. puteulanum

Megachilidae: Anthidiellum notatum rufomaculatum, A.perplexum, Coelioxys germana, Hoplitis truncata, Lithurgus gibbosus, Megachile brevis pseudobrevis, M. campanulae, M. exilis parexilis, M. georgica, M. inimica, M. mendica, M. Megachile petulans, M. policaris, M. rugifrons, M. texana, Osmia calaminthae

Conservation and management

Controlled burning is important for management of C. ashei. It is also important to open the canopy and expose bare sand using methods such as clear cutting and root raking.[2]

Cultivation and restoration

Global rank: G3

Florida: S3[5]

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. [USDA Plants] Accessed December 3, 2015
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 [NatureServe]Accessed December 3, 2015
  3. [Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center]Accessed: December 3, 2015
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Florida State University Robert K. Godfrey Herbarium database. URL: Last accessed: October 2015. Collectors: John R. Bozeman, D. Burch, Buswell, L.J. Brass, Chas. C. Deam, R.K. Godfrey, O. Lakela, Sidney McDaniel, Elmer C. Prichard, D.B. Ward. States and Counties: Florida: Highlands, Marion, Polk, Volusia. Georgia: Tattnall. Compiled by Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.
  5. 5.0 5.1 [Center for Plant Conservation] Accessed December 3, 2015
  6. [Georgia Wildlife] Accessed: December 3, 2015
  7. 7.0 7.1 Carrington, M. E. (1999). "Post-fire seedling establishment in Florida sand pine scrub." Journal of Vegetation Science 10(3): 403-412.
  8. Deyrup, M.A. and N.D. 2015. Database of observations of Hymenoptera visitations to flowers of plants on Archbold Biological Station, Florida, USA.