Information courtesy of Magna Vista High School students
Monarda is in the Lamiaceae family "Bee Balm," "Horsemint" and "Oswego Tea".
Native to Eastern North America from Maine west to Ontario and Minnesota, and South to Northern Georgia.
Bee Balm herb is edible and medicinal. All above-ground parts of the plant are edible and can be used as a pot herb.It is also used as a flavoring in cooked foods. The flowers make an attractive garnish in salads. The fresh or dried leaves can be brewed into a aromatic and medicinal tea.
Unusually warm winters have caused plants to shift their schedules. When bees come out of hibernation, the flowers they need to feed on have already bloomed and died.
Monarada has a long history of use as a medicinal plant by many Indigents proples, who include the Blackfoot, Menominee, Ojibwa and Winnebago. It has also been used to prevent excessive flatulence.