If you smart in planning your backyard, you can actually add a herb garden in it. Mints are perennial herbs beautiful to the eyes, have a wonderful aroma and they grow in nearly every condition.
Whether being used for gardening or landscaping, this herb is worth having around. The most common and popular types of mint are peppermint, spearmint, and apple mint. Mints thrive near water sources and partial shade, but tolerate many different growing environments. In this article we’ll look at the uses of mint, and tips on how to grow it properly.
Uses of Mint:
- Medicinal and cosmetic
- Room scent and aromatherapy
Medical uses include mint helping to treat stomach aches and chest pains, usually used in tea. Mint also is used as an ingredient in ointments for insect bites and rashes. It is used in cough drops and in rubs, such as menthol, to help with the common cold.
Cosmetics and some perfumes use menthol, which is made from mint essential oil. Aromatherapy also is enhanced from the uses of this oil and menthol.
Environmentally friendly insecticides are made from mint oil, which kills pests like wasps, ants, and cockroaches.
Mint is well liked for its pleasing aroma, where it’s used to enliven rooms and treat people’s stresses of life through aromatherapy.
Many people love to use mints in their foods as well, in such items as jellies, syrups, candies, ice creams, and beverages. The sweet flavour and cooling after-taste makes mint an appealing ingredient in our foods and drinks.
Lets be honest it also goes really well in a Mojito.
How to Grow Mint Seeds
Mint seeds can be grown indoors and then transplanted to the garden in the spring. Mint seeds are highly variable, so it can be hard to tell what variety they are, and some species are sterile. The most effective way to plant mint is to take the plant cuttings from the runners of the healthy mint plants.
Optimally, mint needs a well-drained moist location with partial shade. Planting them in elevated garden beds, buckets, and other enclosed containers is necessary, because they have crawling roots that can be invasive to other plants in the garden. Dig a hole and place a bottomless bucket in it, then plant the mint in it, this will keep the roots from killing other plants.
Seedlings need to be placed about one foot apart and watered occasionally until the plant is thriving. After this, only water if going through an extended drought. If the soil is rich and dug up well, the mint doesn’t need fertilization.
Growing mint in garden pots and other containers above ground work fine, and it also adds the benefit of being able to move the mint indoors during the frost and enjoy it year round.
With some clippers, remove the leaves from the top of the plant, which will encourage growth. This is best done when the spikes are in full bloom, to get the maximum flavour from the mint. Never remove all the leaves at once. Mint leaves when grown outside can be harvested usually six months out of the year, and when inside all year round.
Fresh mint is best used right away, it can stored for a couple days in a fridge, put in the freezer, or dried and stored in an air-tight container in a cool, dark, dry area.
Mint is an herb nearly all of us are familiar with, and is a great addition to our gardens and homes. There are many helpful uses for the leaves, including being aesthetically pleasing to our landscape. It’s so easy to grow and maintain and has so many uses, gardeners would benefit from adding it to their plots.