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Aztec Sweet Herb

Lippia dulcis

Family: Verbenaceae (ver-be-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Lippia (LIP-pee-uh) (Info)
Species: dulcis (DUL-sis) (Info)
Synonym:Phyla dulcis
Synonym:Phyla scaberrima



Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


under 6 in. (15 cm)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)


USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall



Other details:

This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

From softwood cuttings

By simple layering

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Birmingham, Alabama

Ceres, California

Vista, California

Lafayette, Louisiana

Lake Charles, Louisiana

Austin, Texas

Houston, Texas

Humble, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 16, 2009, Memaw1 from Marion, TX wrote:

My two Aztec plants thrived during the record breaking heat and drought we found ourselves in here in the Texas Central Plains this summer. They were planted in the spring and well established before the heat wave. They did receive late afternoon shade. I watched in amazement as they doubled, tripled and quadrupled in space spreading out in all directions as bushes and trees in the same area dried up and died. My favorite combination has become ten sprigs of Aztec plus ten sprigs of peppermint, pull off the leaves, add 8 cups of boiling water, steep and enjoy! A delightful healthy beverage hot or cold or room temp.


On Jun 24, 2008, madrid2000 from Humble, TX wrote:

I fell in love with this plant’s sweet smell and taste the first time I saw it. I looked for years for it until I saw it again in a coworker’s herb bouquet. The first plant she gave me was wrapped in a wet paper towel and was dead by the end of the day. The second plant had its roots in a cup of water and survived. I first had it growing outside in shade and it didn’t grow much. It started spreading when I gave it about 5-7 hours of sunlight. It seems to spread over ground by runners that put down roots. Once established, it has survived mostly on rain water. It has also over wintered some brief freezes for me outside with a pile of pine straw on top.


On May 29, 2005, nancyanne from Lafayette, LA (Zone 9a) wrote:

This plant is touted as a sugar replacement, and much sweeter than Stevia - it is, indeed, extremely sweet. However, the leaves have a resinous flavor that might preclude its use as a sugar substitute in mildly flavored dishes. I think it would do well in herbal teas, as an additional sweetness and flavoring. The flavor of the plant is definitely too strong to stand alone as a sweetener in baked goods and such.
Still, it is a very attractive ground cover, tough, drought resistant, and cold tolerant. In full sun, the foliage is bronzy-colored. Spicy scent.
The flowers are unusual, beginning as small (1/4") daisy-looking; new petals form continuously on the end of the old, until the flower looks like a long cylinder with white petals on the end. Odd and interesting.