Lantana montevidensis

Species:Lantana montevidensis (Spreng.) Briq.
Common Name:Trailing Shrub Verbena; Polecat Geranium
Associated Ecological Communities:**
Growth Habit:Shrub
Plant Notes:Trailing Shrub Verbena is an introduced woody perennial shrub in the Verbena family (Verbenaceae). It is native to South America. In Alabama it is widely planted and has escaped primarily in the southern half of the state. Trailing Shrub Verbena occurs on roadsides, on vacant lots, and in urban forests. It is a perennial with a tap root. Stems are arching to decumbent, 1-3 feet in length, rough pubescent, green in color, and 4-angled in cross section. The stems will root at the nodes when in contact with the soil. Leaves are opposite, petiolate, elliptic, lanceolate, ovate, or rhomboid in outline, pubescent, with crenate margins. The leaves have an unpleasant odor when crushed, and an alternate common name for this specie is “polecat-geranium”. Flowers are produced in head-like spikes from the axils of the leaves. Unlike in most other Lantana species in the flora, the inflorescence axes of Trailing Shrub Verbena are not thickened or spongy. The flowers are subtended by a whorl of green bracts that are broadly elliptic, broadly ovate, or reniform in outline. The corolla is 4 lobed. Flower color ranges from lavender through white or yellow. The fruit is a 2 seeded berry that becomes dark purple or black at maturity. Trailing Shrub Verbena is drought, heat, and salt tolerant and well as deer resistant. It is often planted as a ground cover. Trailing Shrub Verbena is listed as an invasive species in Florida.—A. Diamond.
Taxonomic Notes:**
Status:Not Native
Specimen: View specimen details in the Alabama Herbarium Consortium Specimen Database

** Not applicable or data not available.


FamilyVERBENACEAE - Verbena family
Genus Lantana
Species Lantana montevidensis (Spreng.) Briq. - Trailing Shrub Verbena; Polecat Geranium


Citation Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet, Annuaire Conserv. Jard. Bot. Genève 7–8: 301–302. 1904.
Basionym: Lippia montevidensis Spreng. 1825.
Type: URUGUAY: Montevideo, 1822, Sellow s.n. (holotype: B?).

** Not applicable or data not available.


SynonymFull CitationBasionymType
Camara montevidensis Camara montevidensis (Sprengel) Kuntze, Revis. Gen. Pl. 3(2): 250. 1898.Lippia montevidensis Sprengel 1825. 
Camara sellowiana Camara sellowiana (Link & Otto) Kuntze, Revis. Gen. Pl. 2: 504. 1891.Lantana sellowiana Link & Otto 1826. 
Lantana delicatissima Lantana delicatissima Poiteau ex Gonault, Rev. Hort., ser. 4. 1: 461. 1852.  
Lantana megapotamica Lantana megapotamica (Sprengel) Troncoso, Darwiniana 18: 326. 1974.Lippia megapotamica Sprengel 1825. 
Lantana sellowiana var. lanceolata Lantana sellowiana Link & Otto, var. lanceolata Hooker, Bot. Mag. 68: t. 3941. 1842. ARGENTINA/URUGUAY:
Lantana sellowiana Lantana sellowiana Link & Otto, Icon. Pl. Select. 107, pl. 50. 1826. BRAZIL: Without data (lectotype: Link & Otto, Icon. Pl. Select. t. 50. 1826). Lectotypified by Santos Silva, Taxon 50: 1117. 2001.
Lippia megapotamica Lippia megapotamica Sprengel, Syst. Veg. 4(2): 231. 1827. BRAZIL: Rio Grande do Sul: Without data, Sellow s.n. (holotype: ?).
Lippia montevidensis Lippia montevidensis Sprengel, Syst. Veg. 2: 751. 1825. URUGUAY: Montevideo, 1822, Sellow s.n. (holotype: B?).

Specimens and Distribution

This species has been reported in the following counties by the herbaria listed. An overview of the individual specimens are provided in the table that follows. Click on the accession number to view details; click on column headers to sort; choose a county or herbaria to filter the specimen data.

Counties included on distribution map: Autauga, Mobile, Montgomery

Counties represented by specimen data listed below:

Herbaria represented by specimen data listed below: ALNHS, TROY, USAM, UWAL

Range of years during which specimens were collected: -

Barcode / Accession No. County Coll. Date Collector &
Collection No.
Herbarium &
Herbarium Name Used
ALNHS00002380 Mobile 02 Oct 2013 Barger, T. Wayne
Lantana montevidensis (Spreng.) Briq.
TROY000044371 Montgomery 28 Aug 2016 Diamond, Alvin R.
Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet
USAM000015151 Mobile 01 Jun 1974 LeLong, Michel G.
Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet
UWAL0038248 Mobile 01 Jun 1974 LeLong, Michel G.
Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet
UWAL0039952 Montgomery 28 Aug 2016 Diamond, Alvin R.
Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet
TROY000024307 Autauga 11 Nov 2000 Mims, Melinda
Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet
USAM000015150 Mobile 01 Jun 1974 LeLong, Michel G.
Lantana montevidensis (Sprengel) Briquet
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