Lycopus rubellus is a perennial herb to 1.2 m, stems 4-sided, colonial, stems arising from overwintering tubers at the ends of rhizomes and stolons produced the previous year.
Leaves opposite, lance-shaped to elliptic to 10 cm long, 3 cm wide, tip pointed, margin sharply toothed, base tapered to stalk.
Flowers white, often with purple spots, to 0.4 cm long, tubular, petal lobes 5, corolla 0.3-0.4 cm long, twice as long as calyx; flowers embedded in small bracts, in tight, axillary clusters surrounding stem.
Fruit dry, of 4 nutlets, 0.15 cm long; blooms and fruits July-Oct.
Wetland status: OBL.
Frequency in NYC: Rare (NYS S1, E).
Habitat: Moist to wet soil, woods and thickets; soil pH 5.2-7.2, tolerant of shade, fire, anaerobic soil, intolerant of salt (USDA, NRCS 2006).