An attractive little plant, resembling the little eastern Gill-over-the-ground, with slender trailing stems, slightly downy foliage, and lilac or whitish flowers, about a quarter of an inch long. The calyx and corolla are hairy on the outside; the corolla has an erect upper lip, sometimes notched, and a spreading, three-lobed lower lip, and the stamens are four, the lower pair shorter. This is common in shady places near the coast. It has a pleasant aromatic fragrance and was used medicinally by California Indians, so it was called "good herb" by the Mission Fathers, and is still used as a tea by Spanish-Californians, who call it Yerba Buena del Campo, "field herb," distinguishing it from Yerba Buena del Poso, "herb of the well," the garden mint.
There are several kinds of Monardella, fragrant herbs, all western, chiefly Californian; leaves mostly toothless; flowers small, in terminal heads, on long flower-stalks, with bracts, which are often colored; calyx tubular, with five, nearly equal teeth; corolla with erect upper lip, two-cleft, lower lip with three, nearly equal lobes; stamens four, protruding, sometimes the lower pair longer.