Piloblephis rigida

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Piloblephis rigida
20151221 140358.jpg
Photo taken by Michelle Smith at Jonathan Dickinson State Park
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae ⁄ Labiatae
Genus: Piloblephis
Species: P. rigida
Binomial name
Piloblephis rigida
(W. Bartram ex Benth.) Raf.
Pilo rigi dist.jpg
Natural range of Piloblephis rigida from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Common names: Wild pennyroyal, Florida pennyroyal

Taxonomic notes

Synonyms: Pycnothymus rigidus (Bartram ex Bentham) Small; Satureja rigida Bartram ex Bentham

This is the only species in the genus Piloblephis.[1] In Greek, Pilo is hairy and belphis is eyelid, this refers to the hairs on the flower. The name rigida refers to the stiff branches.[2]


This is a short lived perennial species with thin woody stems and needle-like leaves that give off a pennyroyal smell when crushed.[3] The 2-lipped flowers are purple with dark purple spots on the lower tips, arranged in dense, showy clusters.[1]


It is found in peninsular Florida, some counties in Georgia, and a few western Bahamas islands.[2]



It can be found in well drained sunny locations, that include pine flatwoods, sandhills, and xeric oak/saw palmetto scrubs. [3] [4] Associated species include oaks and saw palmetto.


Seen flowering late December 2015 at Jonathan Dickinson State Park on the Kitching Creek Trail by Michelle Smith; very abundant.


The following Hymenoptera families and species were observed visiting flowers of Piloblephis rigida at Archbold Biological Station: [5]

Halictidae: Agapostemon splendens, Augochlorella aurata, Lasioglossum miniatulus, L. nymphalis

Megachilidae: Megachile brevis pseudobrevis

Sphecidae: Oxybelus laetus fulvipes

Conservation and management

Cultivation and restoration

The Miccosukee and Seminole Indians made tea and flavored soups and used it to repel insects.[2]

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 [[1]]Florida Wildflower Foundation. Accessed: February 20, 2016
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 [[2]]Eat the Weeds. Accessed: February 20, 2016
  3. 3.0 3.1 [[3]] Native Florida Wildflowers. Accessed: February 20, 2016
  4. Florida State University Robert K. Godfrey Herbarium database. URL: http://herbarium.bio.fsu.edu. Last accessed: October 2015. Collectors: Cecil R. Slaughter. States and Counties: Florida: Osceola. Compiled by Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.
  5. Deyrup, M.A. and N.D. 2015. Database of observations of Hymenoptera visitations to flowers of plants on Archbold Biological Station, Florida, USA.