Purple Monkeyflower
Mimulus lewisii Pursh
Family: Scrophulariaceae, Figwort
Genus: Mimulus
Synonyms:
Other names: pink monkeyflower
Nomenclature: lewisii = named after Lewis
Nativity / Invasiveness: Montana native plant
Edible plant
No medicinal data
Description

General: perennial with stout stems 30-100 cm tall clustered on stout, branching rhizomes. Herbage sticky-hairy. Often growing in colonies.

Leaves: opposite, stalkless, strongly several-nerved from the base, entire to irregularly edged with shallow, thickened teeth. The lowermost ones reduced, the others 3-7 (10) cm long, 1-3.5 cm wide, lanceolate to ovate or elliptic, pointed.

Flowers: few to several in open, elongating clusters, on stalks 3-6 (10) cm long. Calyx 15-25 (30) mm long, the sharp teeth about equal. Corolla very showy, pink-purple, 30-55 mm long, evidently 2-lipped. The lower lip 3-lobed, marked with white hairs and yellow stripes and maroon dots in the throat. June-August.

Fruits: capsules, 2-sided, with many seeds.


Distribution

In and along streams, and in other wet, open places, at moderate to high elevations in the mountains, in w. and c. parts of MT. Also in B.C. and Alberta to CA, WY and UT.
Edible Uses

The leaves and stems of pink monkeyflower are edible, raw or cooked. They likely have a slightly bitter flavor.


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