23 Plants That Start With M

Learning about all the plants that exist is incredibly challenging because there is such a wide variety of them in varying different sizes, colors, and shapes, as well as many that are incredibly similar yet still slightly different from each other.

To make it easier to learn about the different species of plants it can be helpful to find ways to break them down into groups and categories to make them easier to remember and recognize.

One of the best ways to do this is to learn about plants according to the letter they start with, as this is an easy and effective way of learning about all kinds of different plants that all have one thing in common and can help memorize them more easily.

In this guide we’re going to look at 23 different types of plants that begin with the letter M, to help with this. Some will be very easy to remember and will be easily recognizable, while others may be a little less well-known and harder to remember, but regardless, this list can be used to help with this and as a helpful reference in the future if you do forget.


Maple trees are one of the most instantly recognizable and widespread trees in the world and are also sometimes known as Acer which is the genus of the tree. There are some 132 different species of Maple, many of which are located in Asia, however, there are numerous species in Europe, North Africa, and North America.

Maple trees are known for their leaves which are the palmate type with winged fruits, famously gracing the Canadian Flag. Maple syrup, another famous Canadian staple, is also made of the sap of certain Maple trees, making this tree a real cultural symbol and one of the most instantly recognizable trees in the world.


Mango’s are the fruit that comes from the tropical Mangifera Indica tree, which has its origins in the areas of Myanmar, Bangladesh, and northern India, however, it has been cultivated widely in various places from southern Asia to other parts of the world.

The tree is famed for its delicious fruit, the mango, known for its sweetness, juiciness, and pleasant golden colors. The mango tree is also the national tree of Bangladesh!


While magnolia is often thought of as a color more than a plant, this is actually due to the color of the flower itself, a beautiful flowering plant and one of the most ancient genus of flowers, with fossils identified from 20 million years ago, with relatives hailing from as long ago as 95 million years!

The flower is a very popular decorative choice with a distinctive white and red coloration, and beautifully shaped leaves.


Mallow, also known officially as Malvaceae, is a flowering plant with some 244 genera and 4225 known species, making it incredibly diverse and widespread. 

This means that there are many visual differences between different mallow flowers, from vivid coloration to more muted coloration, and varying shapes for leaves, petals, and flowers.

There is a lot of controversy and debate about the categorization of these plants, and many scientists have to break them down into smaller categories to be able to study them effectively.


Melons are another type of plant with various different offshoots and specific different families, however the most famous is known for its sweet,  juicy, and fleshy fruit which is edible.

The melon fruit is actually a type of berry, which is interesting as many people think of berries as very small fruits. 

The word melon comes from the Latin word melopepo which is a Latinization of the Greek word, for melon. 

There are many different types of melon today, most of them being cultivars specifically bred for bearing a type of fruit. Cantaloupes are a great example of this. 

Melons have been popular since ancient times and continue to be one of the most widely consumed fruits known for their flavor and the variety of different types of fruit that can be grown.


Scientifically known as Lamiaceae, the mint plant is an aromatic plant that constitutes many families of different varieties of the mint plant, with some 6900 to 7200 individual species and subspecies. 

Many aromatic plants fall into this category and while the most well-known is the Mentha, other popular species such as basil, sage, rosemary, marjoram, oregano, thyme, and even lavender fall under this umbrella, indicating that these aromatic plants share close relations in their genetics and history and have been mixed up long before modern culinary traditions!


One of the most popular and impressive plants in the world is the Monstera, which is a genus of some 45 species of flowering plants native to the tropical areas of the Americas. The name comes from the Latin word for monstrous, due to the huge leaves with unusual holes and gaps in them that are unlike many other plants in the world.

The plant is known for its aerial roots which it uses to hook over branches to support itself. A very popular house plant, there are also cultivars used to harvest its fruit which tastes like a mixture of pineapple and banana.


Mahonia is a genus of around 70 species of evergreen shrubs and small trees which are native to eastern Asia and Central/Northern parts of America.

The plant is known for its pinnate leaves and is a popular garden shrub due to the fact that they are evergreen and look very ornamental, particularly when the flowers bloom in the autumn, winter, and early spring.

The fruits are very bitter and acidic and aren’t particularly pleasant.


This flowering herbaceous plant is very widespread across large parts of the world including Europe, Asia, and North America, and is characterized by relatively simple stems that don’t branch, which lean or hang down due to the large and plentiful leaves near the top of the plant.

The flowers can come in shades of white, lavender, green, or red depending on the specific species and geographical location, and the fruits are typically round with berries that contain seeds.


Maranta is a genus of flowering plants that are native to central and southern America and the Caribbean. 

The plant is named after Bartolomeo Maranta, an Italian doctor and avid botanist from back in the 16th century.

There are some 40 to 50 known species of this plant, and they are sometimes known as the prayer plant, due to the fact that the leaves are flattened in the daytime and fold up at night.

The flowers are small with around 3 petals and the leaves are evergreen and oval, with sheathed stalks.


Mecardonia, sometimes called the axilflower, is a genus of plants with some 12 known species, with a distribution in the United States and South America. 

When the plants are dry they are mostly black, however, they can be green and lush in temperate climates, and are regularly sold as ornamental flowers in colder regions, a popular species being the Mecardonia Magic Carpet Yellow.

Meadow Rue

Also known as Thalictrum, this is a genus of some 120 to 200 plants in the buttercup family, widely known as meadow rue. 

The flowers are generally small and have no petals, using many long stamens in varying colors of white, vivid yellow, pink or purple to attract insects for pollination. 

It is distributed widely across shaded and damp areas in the Northern Hemisphere but has also been seen in southern Africa and tropical South America.

There are no known species in Australiasia however and are generally found in temperate regions.

Mexican Flame Vine

The popular and eye-catching Mexican Flame Vine is a species native to Mexico, Central America, and the islands of the Caribbean, and is used widely for decoration and ornamentation due to its vivid orange flowers and unique shape.

The flower requires a lot of sunlight and doesn’t do well in wet soil, and is ideally allowed to climb a trellis or other shrubbery.

Monkey Flower

Mimulus, in the family Phrymaceae, is a beautiful little plant that now contains only seven species, after many previous plants were reassigned to other families.

The Mimulus prefers wet and moist areas and does not do well in dry environments at all, being coveted primarily as ornamental plants for gardens. The cultivar, Highland Red has actually been awarded the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.

The name monkeyflower comes from the shape of the flower which was believed to look like a grinning monkey face.

Morning Glory

One of the most widespread and popular flowers is the vivid morning glory with some 1000 species belonging to several different genera.

As the name suggests, the flowers unfurl in the mornings spreading their full bloom out and start to shrink and fade a few hours before the light of the day fades. 

There are some species that are night-blooming however.

They are a popular flower in gardens and ornamental shows, however, they were also used by Aztec priests for their hallucinogenic properties. 

Mountain Ash

Also known as Rowans, these plants are shrubs or trees that are native in the cooler temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere, with many species being found in China and the Himalayas in particular however they are also widespread in Europe.

Its widespread nature and history have made it a key part of the traditions and mythology of various different ancient cultures from the Sami to the druids of the Celtic world.


The Mulberry, also known as the Morus, is a genus of flower plants that consist of a wide range of deciduous trees that grow both in the wild and in gardens worldwide.

The main variants are the white, black and red mulberry, however, there are many cultivars due in part to the fact that their fruit was popular historically, and that the plant is preferred by the lucrative silkworm. 

Latest posts by Caroline Roberts (see all)