Herb Series: Mint Glorious Mint

Some of you are saying heck yeah… make me a mojito!! Others of you are sighing and rolling your eyes because mint is trying to take over your bed, your yard, your growing space!! So before I dive into all the medicinal and glorious benefits of mint let me throw out some thoughts about how I have tackled this wonderful, if invasive, herb. If you aren’t growing it now but you want to, then can I suggest that you put it into a container where it will mind you and not act like zombies after the apocalypse and take over your gardening world. I haven’t tried this, but some people plant it in a pot into the ground to keep its roots from spreading - let us know if you’ve tried it. If you are looking for an edible ground cover for an area where you don’t mind if it spreads - check out different varieties that will work in that space. Mint can grow in shade so it can be great for a colder more neglected area in your yard and fyi Chickens LOVE it.) Be advised that mint can cross pollinate. If you want to grow several varieties (like Chocolate mint, Spearmint, Apple mint, Peppermint etc) then my suggestion is to plant them separately in pots in different parts of your edible landscape. If you are growing mint for culinary purposes, pinch back the flowers to keep the flavor lovely. If you are happy to let it flower, it will attract bees, good wasps, and hoverflies which eat aphids. My heart goes out to you if you already have a mint situation on your hands. If you are looking for a nuclear option of how to to organically but permanently remove it, reach out. Mint has pluses - an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent called Rosmarinic acid which shows promise as a natural remedy for seasonal allergies. Additionally, its menthol can soothe sore throats and help as an expectorant. My favorite ways to use it are in cocktails, homemade ice cream, tea, as a compress for headaches, in greek salad and in pesto w/lamb. Studies indicate it may be a natural pain reliever & help with gastric ulcers. At the very least you’ll have fresh breath - always a need in the garden. Reach out and give us a call if you need help with how to remove mint that has taken over. 

Christina Manning Lebek