Mint is a genus of crops within the household Lamiaceae (mint household).The precise distinction between species is unclear; it’s estimated that 13 to 24 species exist. Hybridization happens naturally the place some species vary overlap. Many hybrids and cultivars are identified.
The genus has a subcosmopolitan distribution throughout Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, and North America.
The species that makes up the genus Mint are extensively distributed and will be discovered in lots of environments. Most develop finest in moist environments and moist soils. Mints will develop 10–120 cm tall and might unfold over an indeterminate space. As a result of their tendency to unfold unchecked, some mints are thought of invasive.
A vigorous grower and spreader, mint has loved a protracted historical past of use in delicacies, conventional drugs, and aromatherapy.
Its identify is derived from a narrative in Greek Mythology. Minthe was a wonderful and lonely water nymph who fell in love with Hades, the god of the useless and king of the underworld. When his spouse, Queen Persephone, found their affair, she reworked Minthe right into a mint plant in revenge.
Discovered thriving subsequent to lakes, rivers, and different freshwater sources on each continent, mint prefers a cool, moist, and partially shaded spot within the backyard. However as a result of mint is so extremely adaptable, it would develop nicely in virtually any setting.
Mint is hardy in USDA zones 5 by 9, overwintering in temperatures as little as -20°F. However while you don’t wish to forgo a contemporary supply of mint by the winter, it’s simple sufficient to carry mint indoors.
And since mint is such a flexible herb, it’s nicely price a spot on a sunny windowsill.
- Spearmint (Mentha spicata)
- Peppermint (Mentha piperita)
- Apple Mint (Mentha suaveolens)
- Chocolate Mint (Mentha piperita ‘Chocolate’)
- Orange Mint (Mentha piperita citrata)
- Lavender Mint (Mentha piperita ‘Lavendula’)
Mint Rising Situations
Mint is a simple sufficient plant to look after, indoors and out. When cultivating this herb inside, there are some things you need to be mindful in order that your mint plant is glad and productive.
Though mint can tolerate partial shade outdoor, in an indoor setting mint will want a very good provide of daylight to develop nicely. Select a sunny spot that receives a minimum of four hours of direct daylight per day.
Mint grows finest in lighter soil with a pH of 6 to 7. It must also drain nicely whereas nonetheless retaining moisture. You should buy natural seed beginning mixes or make your individual by mixing peat moss, perlite, and sand in equal components.
Mint loves the water so it’s crucial to maintain the soil moist, however not too moist. Select a pot with drainage holes to stop waterlogging and add a skinny layer of mulch on the floor of the soil to cut back evaporative water loss.
Like different herbs, mint shouldn’t want a lot fertilization. In reality, fertilizing too typically can result in much less tasty foliage. In the event you assume your mint plant wants a lift, use a really dilute compost tea or fish emulsion. In the event you overdo it, flush out amassed fertilizer and salts by working plain faucet water by the soil for a number of minutes.
How to Grow Mint Indoors
The only technique to propagate a mint plant for indoor rising is to take some cuttings from an current plant. Select mint sprigs which can be a number of inches in size with new development on the tip. Minimize slightly below the axil, the place the branching nodes meet the stem. Place cuttings in a glass of water and set it in a spot that receives oblique daylight. Roots will emerge in about two weeks.
As a result of mint roots develop so near the floor of the soil, it’s very easy to dig up a part of a longtime plant to make a model new indoor plant. If dividing an outside mint plant, make sure to take away all soil from the roots to keep away from introducing bugs to your indoor areas. Rinse your complete plant below the faucet, paying additional care to the roots. Soak the plant in soapy water for 20 minutes earlier than planting in contemporary soilless combine.
Rising mint from seeds is more difficult than cuttings or division, however it may be achieved. Generally, mint has a low germination fee and hybrids are a lot much less prone to develop true to sort.
To extend the possibilities of success, attempt to keep on with easy varieties, like spearmint.
Sow seeds over a soilless combine, ¼ inch deep. Mist the soil with a twig bottle and set it in a sunny location. Maintain the soil evenly moist by giving it a spritz or two every day.
After a number of weeks, the seeds ought to sprout however shall be fairly fragile. Take care when watering and permit seedlings to turn into nicely established earlier than transplanting into one other pot.
To offer your self one of the best likelihood of rising mint from seed, make sure you buy prime quality seeds.
How to Harvest Mint
You can begin harvesting out of your mint plant as quickly as it’s about four inches tall. Frequent pruning additionally helps hold the plant productive and provides it a fuller, bushier form.
Youthful development is extra flavorful than older, woody sprigs. Minimize lengths of mint as you want them, leaving 1 inch of stem on the soil line.
You may prune mint in a lot the identical means as you prune basil.
Though mint is finest when it’s contemporary, you may place cuttings in water to maintain them from wilting earlier than you’re prepared to make use of them.