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The leaves are from the south of Russia (somewhere around Anapa, Krasnodar Krai) and I was told this was a sort of Mentha. I doubt that, given the leaves are so large. It does have a smell, but, again, I wouldn’t say it is similar to mint.

I also was told that the locals call it Лесная мята (Forest mint), but it’s clearly not Mentha laxiflora.

A leaf Scale

  • 1
    Looks like it might be a kind of sage (salvia) – GolezTrol May 24 '15 at 12:26
  • @GolezTrol Hm, right, looks very similar to common sage (whatever this means) on this page, except that mine has one or two smaller leaves below each large one. – kirelagin May 24 '15 at 12:35
  • I checked some other photos and, yes, it does look like Salvia Officinalis (except for the additional leaves, again). – kirelagin May 24 '15 at 12:39
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We have two candidates for this plant, salvia officinalis, garden sage or salvia fruticosa / salvia triloba, Greek sage. And to make things more interesting, there are cross-breeds between them... Flowers would help, but I guess we are a few weeks too soon.

To classify your leaves as sage, we'd actually need "olfactory internet"; as we don't, rest assured that sage has a very characteristic scent with certain bitter undertones, but I'm really bad at describing smells, sorry.

I would not identify this as Greek sage, despite the "extra leaves", because Greek sage is "hairier" and because of the fuzz appears more silver than yours. So to me, this is common (garden) sage, but as I said, lacking flowers I'd need my nose to confirm this. The question of the extra leaves needs solving, though: I went in my herb garden and did a bit of snooping around and voilá - my sage (salvia officinalis) has them, too, at least on some leaves. Here is a small collection:

salvia off. leaves

  • Well, I have a basic idea what Salvia officinalis should smell like, and I confirm that this leaves do smell very similarly when I violently rub them. I also agree that it is definitely not Greek sage. – kirelagin May 24 '15 at 20:11
  • The problem with the leaves is that there are not one or two of them. As you can see, I have six large leaves and every single of them has one or two additional smaller ones. This is probably just some local specificity… – kirelagin May 24 '15 at 20:14
  • @kirelagin : Possible. As I wrote, there are also crosses between Greek and common sage, so who knows what happened a few generations back ;-). Leaf pattern, stem shape and overall growth say "sage" and your nose confirms it. – Stephie May 25 '15 at 5:47

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