From fruits to flowers, there are some beautiful (and tasty) plants starting with M. Read on to find 25 of the most interesting and discover a little more about them.
Also, make sure to check out our list of 25 marvelous flowers that start with M for further inspiration in your horticulture adventure.
Plants Starting With M – Quick Look
- Meadow Saffron
- Mesquite Tree
- Moor Grass
- Morning Glory
- Monkey Flower
- Mexican Sunflower
- Maltese Cross
- Maidenhair Fern
- Mulberry Tree
- Money Plant
- Monkey Puzzle Tree
- Mountain Mint
- Meadow Rue
Common Name(s): Magnolia
Scientific Name: Magnolia
Native to: East Asia
Named after a French biologist, Pierre Magnol, this ancient flower dates back to before the existence of bees. They are pickled and used as a condiment in Japan, as well as being eaten as a vegetable.
Common Name(s): Mango
Scientific Name: Mangifera indica
Native to: Northwestern Myanmar, Bangladesh, and India
These large fruit trees can grow up to 100 ft (30 meters). As well as bearing delicious fruit, the wood makes useful lumber to make ukuleles and low-cost furniture.
Common Name(s): Maranta, Prayer plant
Scientific Name: Maranta
Native to: Central and South America and the West Indies
The leaves of the Maranta start the day flat and end it folded leading to the nickname of “prayer plant.”
4. Meadow Saffron
Common Name(s): Meadow saffron, Autumn crocus, Naked ladies
Scientific Name: Colchicum autumnale
Native to: Great Britain and Ireland
This plant resembles crocuses and is a toxic, autumn-blooming flower. It is also called “naked lady” as the flowers emerge long before the leaves.
5. Mesquite Tree
Common Name(s): Mesquite Tree, Velvet Mesquite
Scientific Name: Prosopis velutina
Native to: The Sonoran, Mojave, and Chihuahuan Deserts
This tree is an attractive and ornamental plant in its natural range, but outside of these regions, it is considered a noxious weed.
6. Moor Grass
Common Name(s): Moor Grass, Purple moor grass
Scientific Name: Molinia caerulea
Native to: Europe, west Asia, and north Africa
This grass can live under extreme conditions but is commonly found in heathlands and bogs. It grows well from the lowest grounds right up to the heights of the Alps.
Common Name(s): Mint
Scientific Name: Lamiaceae
Native to: The Mediterranean
As well as grown for the minty taste of the herb, this plant, with its symmetrical purple flowers, is grown for show.
The cooling sensation of mint is due to the menthol within it activating nerve cells which the brain interprets as a cold feeling.
Common Name(s): Monstera, Swiss Cheese Plant, Split-leaf philodendron
Scientific Name: Monstera deliciosa
Native to: Mexico
This plant's tolerance to a range of conditions makes it an ideal houseplant. However, when grown indoors it rarely flowers.
In its natural tropical forest habitat, the plant produces both flowers and fruit.
Common Name(s): Mimosa, Sensitive plant, Sleepy plant, Action plant, Touch-me-not, Shameplant
Scientific Name: Mimosa pudica
Native to: Tropical Americas
This plant has the unusual feature of folding and drooping when touched, leading many to grow it simply to witness this effect. The plant will re-open just a few minutes later.
Common Name(s): Mustard
Scientific Name: Brassica and Sinapis
Native to: Central Asia
Several plants are referred to as mustard and they are of course most well known for the use of their seeds as a spicy condiment.
The cultivation and use possibly date back over 6,000 years.
11. Morning Glory
Common Name(s): Morning Glory
Scientific Name: Convolvulaceae (family)
Native to: Worldwide
Morning Glory is a common name given to over 1,000 species of flower. It is naming the effect of many species to reach full bloom early in the day and slowly curl in as it heads to nightfall.
12. Monkey Flower
Common Name(s): Monkeyflower, Allegheny monkeyflower, Square-stemmed monkeyflower.
Scientific Name: Mimulus ringens
Native to: Eastern and central North America
This small flower thrives in moist areas and blossoms from spring until fall. They attract Baltimore and Common Buckeye butterflies, acting as a larval host to both.
13. Mexican Sunflower
Common Name(s): Mexican Sunflower
Scientific Name: Tithonia
Native to: Mexico and Southwestern United States
These flowers are widely cultivated and the bright red and yellow flowers create a beautiful late summer bloom
Common Name(s): Mahonia
Scientific Name: Mahonia
Native to: Eastern Asia, the Himalayas, and North and Central America.
This looks like it offers tasty berries, but the plant contains a compound known as Berberine which causes vomiting, low blood pressure, and tiredness when consumed.
Common Name(s): Marguerite, Ox-eye daisy, Dog daisy,
Scientific Name: Leucanthemum vulgare
Native to: Europe
Although native to Europe, these daisy-like plants have been introduced to North America, Australia, and New Zealand. They grow happily in meadows, fields, and scrub.
In Israel, the flowers are dried to create herbal tea. You can also marinate the unopened bud to create a caper-like food.
16. Maltese Cross
Common Name(s): Maltese Cross, Scarlet lychnis, Flower of Bristol, Jerusalem cross, Nonesuch
Scientific Name: Silene chalcedonica
Native to: Central and eastern Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, and northwestern China
These startlingly red plants make an excellent ornamental addition to any garden. It was voted the county plant of Bristol, the UK in 2002 and is featured on the city’s university crest.
17. Maidenhair Fern
Common Name(s): Maidenhair Fern
Scientific Name: Adiantum
Native to: Worldwide
These plants can be found in moist soil or clinging to stone walls. Endemic to New Zealand, it is common in the west and south of the country.
18. Mulberry Tree
Common Name(s): White mulberry, Common mulberry, Silkworm mulberry
Scientific Name: Morus alba
Native to: India and central China
One of the most notable features of the white mulberry is that it is home to silkworms and therefore used in silk production.
The fruits are sweet and tasty, although if you can’t find any, know that a fruitless version has been developed for landscaping in North America.
19. Money Plant
Common Name(s): Money plant, Malabar chestnut, French peanut, Guiana chestnut, Provision tree
Scientific Name: Pachira aquatica
Native to: Central and South America
Shockingly, that small little potted plant you see sold commercially for the home can grow into a huge tree of up to 59.1ft (18 m).
This smaller tree prefers dry soil and the name supposedly comes from a story of a poor man who made a huge amount of money selling the plant after he prayed for a fortune.
Common Name(s): Merrybells, Bellworts, Bellflowers
Scientific Name: Uvularia
Native to: Central and eastern North America
This small plant looks like a yellow bluebell, but it is actually closely related to the lily. They can be found scattered across woodland areas.
21. Monkey Puzzle Tree
Common Name(s): Monkey puzzle tree, Monkey tail tree, Piñonero, Pewen, Chilean pine
Scientific Name: Araucaria araucana
Native to: Chile and Argentina
This tree is sometimes referred to as a “fossil tree” because it is so similar to many prehistoric trees. Its unique appearance has made it a popular choice for parks and gardens around the world.
22. Mountain Mint
Common Name(s): Mountain mint
Scientific Name: Pycnanthemum
Native to: North America
This herb is most commonly found in North Carolina and smells of a mixture of thyme and mint when crushed.
Common Name(s): Melon
Scientific Name: Cucurbitaceae
Native to: Africa
Melons are over 4,000 years old and come in over 40 delicious varieties. They are a favorite summertime snack the world over.
24. Meadow Rue
Common Name(s): Meadow rue
Scientific Name: Thalictrum
Native to: Northern Hemisphere
These spiny-flowered plants are in the buttercup family. They add nice sprays of color to a floral garden.
Common Name(s): Melampodium
Scientific Name: Melampodium
Native to: Tropical and subtropical regions in the Americas
Melampodiums are in the sunflower family and have the appearance of bright, bold daisies. They often grow large enough to fall under their own weight.