Back to Biodiversity Explorer main pageGo to Iziko Museums of Cape Town home pageAbout Biodiversity Explorer - history, goals, etc.Send us your questions about southern African biodiversityPeople who have contributed content and images.Search Biodiversity Explorer

Aloysia triphylla (Lemon verbena, Vervain)

[= Lippia citriodora, Aloysia citriodora]

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Asterids > Euasterid I > Order: Lamiales > Family: Verbenaceae

Lemon verbena is native to Argentina and Chile and is used as both a cullinary and a medicinal herb. Medicinally, it is attributed with digestive and sedative properties. The leaves produce a lemon smell when crushed and are dried for use in herbal teas, liqueurs and fruit juices. Fresh or dried leaves are used in the same way as lemongrass as an ingredient in stews and soups. Oil extracted from the leaves is used in aromatherapy and as an additive to soaps and cosmetic products.


  • van Wyk, B.-E. 2005. Food Plants of the World - Identification, Culinary Uses and Nutritional Value. Briza, Pretoria.


Contact us if you can contribute information or images to improve this page.

Biodiversity Explorer home   Iziko home   Search