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How to Grow and Care for Peppermint in Your Own Garden

How to Grow and Care for Peppermint in Your Own Garden

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Notes

Care of Peppermint is relatively easy. You don’t have to worry whether it is getting partial sun or partial shade as the entire plant can tolerate severe conditions. Its distinct appearance and texture make an excellent display in any plant lover’s home.

In this post, we’re sharing tips and tricks for your Peppermint to thrive. We’re also sharing shopping recommendations if you’re looking to take one home. Keep reading to learn more about this mint’s interesting attributes!

What Is Peppermint?

The Peppermint is also known as Mentha piperita, Mentha piperita, and Mentha piperita.

This perennial plant from the Theaceae family is well-known for its pleasant, minty taste and health benefits. It has lanceolate-shaped and dark green-colored fresh leaves.

We will mostly discuss the ideal conditions when caring for the Peppermint indoors, but it can also grow outdoors in hardiness zones 3-8.

Origin And Family

Mentha piperita originates from the mint genus, which is part of the Theaceae family. Europe is home to this great plant. Mentha piperita has become a popular indoor plant in recent years, thriving in most households that give it plenty of sun.

Carl Linnaeus discovered this aromatic plant in 1753. It produces small pinkish lavender flowers.

Where To Buy

Peppermint is a beautiful addition to any garden, and we’ve had great success buying one online. You may start by checking your local nursery, but if you want to select and purchase plants from the comfort of your home, be sure to check out Etsy.

The price tags for a Peppermint are usually fairly affordable.

Peppermint Plant Size

When grown indoors, the Peppermint grows to a height of 1-2 feet. It grows fast and thrives right in front of a window.

Peppermint Care Needs

Your Peppermint, with its pleasant taste and health benefits, will flourish if you take good care of it. This plant loves the sun and moist soil throughout the year.

Water your mint once every 3 days in spring and late summer. Increase watering if your mint starts to wilt or the top 1 inch of the potting soil is drying out rather than staying evenly moist. Make sure to give it a full douse, allowing water to pass down to the bottom of the pot. In terms of lighting, full sun is recommended for this plant for the best results.

Take a look at the more specific growing recommendations we’ve written below to keep your Peppermint healthy and happy!

Care Difficulty

While all plants need some level of care, the Mentha piperita is considered by most indoor gardeners to be easy to care for. With the right combination of factors, such as the amount of light and potting mix, you can maintain this plant in its best health. 

Growth Rate

The Mentha piperita plant grows 1-2 feet in height when grown to its maturity indoors. Its growing season is in the spring. Most mint species, including this one, have a fast growth rate.

Potting

This Minty plant has adjusted well to indoor living and can thrive in almost any type of potting material.

In terms of sizing, you’d want to use small pots for most plants. As long as your pot has adequate draining holes at the bottom, your plant should be generally safe against root rot.

Repotting

As your Peppermint develops, you should consider moving it to a larger pot if you’re not seeing new growth at the center of the pot, with new green sprouts ringing the edges. Because of this plant’s fast growth rate, you will need to repot your plant regularly.

Use a fresh batch of soil when repotting your mint so its roots will have more nutrients to absorb.

Soil

Sandy or clay soil is the most recommended option for the Mentha piperita. Adjust the ratio accordingly so that the final mixture is well-aerated.

The soil type should always support good drainage to avoid root rot and other diseases. We suggest choosing potting mixes such as the following:

Photo Title Price Buy
Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting...image Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting Mix 6 qt., Grows beautiful Houseplants, 2-Pack $12.99
Burpee, 9 Quarts...image Burpee, 9 Quarts | Premium Organic Potting Natural Soil Mix Food Ideal for Container Garden-Vegetable, Flower & Herb Use for Indoor Outdoor Plant $12.99
SUNGRO HORTICULTURE Black...image SUNGRO HORTICULTURE Black Gold 1310102 8-Quart All Purpose Potting Soil With Control, Brown/A $14.81
Miracle-Gro Potting Mix Miracle-Gro Potting Mix $16.99
FoxFarm Ocean Forest...image FoxFarm Ocean Forest Potting Soil Mix Indoor Outdoor for Garden and Plants | Plant Fertilizer | 12 Quart + THCity Stake $19.99

pH

pH for this plant should be around 6.0–7.5, meaning your Mentha piperita likes neutral to acidic soil. If you’re repotting on schedule or adding new soil from time to time, pH level wouldn’t be as much of a concern than if you’re growing this plant outdoors. 

Water

Mentha piperita is a sun-loving plant that needs good draining soil throughout the year.

Water your plant once every 3 days in the spring and summer months. Increase watering if your mint starts to wilt or the top 1 inch of the potting soil is drying out rather than staying evenly moist. Drench the soil until water drains out the hole at the bottom of the pot. If you’re using a collecting tray, make sure to empty it often to avoid root rot and other infections.

In the winter, continue to water your plants deeply but do it less frequently.

Light

This easy-to-care-for houseplant prefers approximately 3-4 hours of sunlight a day. If there’s a lack of light, no worries because they can still survive in partial or full shade.

If your Peppermint isn’t getting enough light, you can move it closer to a window or consider investing in LED grow lights. Here are products we recommended for you to choose from:

Also, avoid clustering Peppermint.

Fertilizer

Houseplants require water, direct sunshine, and soil for nutrition. Soil can lose its nutritional substance over time and must be supplied with plant food.

If you want a thriving Mentha piperita, fertilize it every three weeks with a liquid organic fertilizer during the spring. You may go for a balanced fertilizer, but make sure to dilute it first if it’s highly concentrated.

Typically, you don’t have to put in much fertilizer during the winter.

Propagating Peppermint

The Peppermint can be propagated from the comfort of your home. Here are steps for making more of this Fresh-smelling plant.

Stem Cuttings In Soil

One basic method to grow a Mentha piperita is planting stem cuttings into soil directly. If you don’t have this plant yet, cuttings can be purchased from Etsy or from your local Facebook Marketplace.

It is best to propagate during late spring or early summer so it will be easier for your plant to recover from the distress of transplant shock.

1. Remove the stems. Cut a healthy portion of the plant, ideally three-inch-tall, with a few green leaves and nodes using clean shears.

2. Plant. The nodes of the stem should be kept in a pot or container filled with wet potting soil. To keep it in place, compress the dirt around the stem or use wooden skewers. Excessive movement might hinder root development.

3. Maintain. Place your container close to a window that receives both direct and indirect light. Maintain constant moisture in the soil.

4. Wait. New roots will appear in around 2-3 weeks. A developing sprout is the clearest sign that your cutting has established roots effectively!

Stem Cuttings In Water

To propagate Mentha piperita cuttings in water, follow these steps:

1. Cut. Divide a 4-6 inch section of your plant in half. Excessively lengthy cuts may become lanky.

2. Submerge. Allow the cutting to establish roots in a glass of water. To avoid rot, remove any leaves that are below the water level.

3. Refill. Fill the glass with clean water every 3-5 days. Keep the plant nodes submerged to promote quick root growth.

4. Transplant. Transfer your cutting into sterile potting soil once the roots have developed sufficiently. Keep your plant wet to help the roots penetrate the soil.

Air Layering Technique

Air-layering is usually the safest way to propagate rare, expensive, and sensitive plants. Compared with the usual soil and water propagation methods, cuttings that are air-layered will grow roots before they’re severed from the mother plant.

Here are the steps in air-layering your Mentha piperita:

1. Choose a section to propagate. Find the section of the stem which you want to grow into a new plant. Make sure it has a node.

2. Wrap the stem. Use sphagnum moss and clingwrap to wrap the stem. Fill a plastic container or a paper cup halfway with soil, then split it in half and tape it back together with the stem wedged in the middle.

3. Wait for the roots. It may take 2-4 weeks to sprout roots, depending on the temperature, humidity, and health of your chosen part. You must keep your chosen medium wet (but never soggy).

4. Cut and plant. When the new roots are pushing through the layer of substrate, you can detach the cutting and directly plant it into the soil.

Humidity And Aeration

This mint is a Fresh-smelling plant that prefers moderate humidity between around 45% relative humidity or higher.

If the leaves of your Peppermint are curling or crispy with brown edges, you may try buying a humidifier. This gadget is intended to steadily emit steam and considerably increase the humidity in a room.

Temperature

This plant is one of the oldest herbs and can tolerate hot weather, or dry conditions. Temperature ranges between 85–95 degrees Fahrenheit is best for your Mentha piperita.

Sudden temperature changes can be fatal for your Mentha piperita. During the winter, close windows and block any openings where cold drafts may enter. Don’t place your plant close to appliances that emit heat.

Flowers

If you’re lucky, you might witness your Mentha piperita blooming with significant pinkish lavender flowers. However, this doesn’t typically happen in an indoor growing location.

Pests, Diseases, And Other Problems

Overall, I would say that Peppermint is resistant to diseases and pests. Here are a few quick tips for curing common ailments, as well as some general suggestions to keep this plant healthy.

Fungus Gnats

Fungus gnats are insects that feed on organic matter in the soil. They are tiny, and their larvae are known to devour the roots of plants, which is terrible news for your Mentha piperita.

There are products such as hydrogen peroxide, Pyrethrin sprays, and neem oil that target both the flies and the larvae. If you frequently reapply, you should be able to exterminate these annoying insects in a matter of weeks.

We’ve used yellow sticky traps to deal with these gnats on our hydroponics systems, and we found that they work pretty well.

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is a fungal disease that normally appears as round, powdery white patches on the foliage and stems of your Mentha piperita. Juvenile leaves are particularly vulnerable.

To treat, add one-half teaspoon of liquid soap and one tablespoon of baking soda to one gallon of water. Spray the mixture generously on your infected plant.

It is also good to keep the foliage dry by putting your plant in an area with good ventilation.

White Flies

Whiteflies are gnat-like pests that will eat the sap of your houseplants. Having them on your Mentha piperita can be a big inconvenience. They deposit eggs which will hatch into larvae that eat the undersides of your plant’s leaves.

A generic pesticide can be used to manage whiteflies. You may purchase it online or make it yourself using the method below:

• To prepare your base, combine 5 drops of dish soap (make sure that it doesn’t contain bleach!) and 1 cup of vegetable or olive oil.

• To each cup of water, add 1.5 tablespoons of the prepared mixture.

• Before transferring the solution to a spray container, shake it vigorously.

• Spray all afflicted plant surfaces, giving special attention to the undersides of the leaves.

Scale Insects

Adult scales are stationary and covered in a waxy coating, but they will give birth to very tiny crawling bugs.

You can scrape off armored scales using an old ID card or with your fingers, but you will need to do it gently and carefully to avoid ripping the leaves of your Peppermint.

Use horticultural oil, neem oil, or insecticidal soap to suffocate scale insects. When you find active crawlers, spray your plant with a general pesticide and follow it up with a second application after a week. We recommend some products below:

Aphids

Aphids are usually found in clusters on your Mentha piperita. They could be colored green, brown, black, red, yellow, orange, or white. They increase extremely fast and can weaken your plant within a matter of days!

Aphids are especially drawn to regions of new growth, like young shoots and flower buds. As they feed on the sap, they create unpleasant black and white splotches.

If you see these disgusting crawlers, quarantine your sick plant from the others right away. To get rid of the aphids, spray your plant with a strong stream of water, but remember to protect the soil with a plastic cover to fetch any falling bugs and their eggs. Dispose of the plastic somewhere away from your garden.

Spraying insecticidal soap, neem oil, or horticultural oil can take care of the problem, but you may need to repeat the process many times until the aphid population is entirely exterminated.

Mealybugs

Mealybug infestations are somewhat common on Mentha piperita. If you find these tiny parasites (often recognized with white puffs on the leaves) on any of your houseplants, act promptly.

Use a cotton ball with isopropyl alcohol, then rub it over the leaves and stem of your plant. Neem oil also works great as a prophylactic spray.

Brown Leaf Tips

Browning edges on the leaves of your Mentha piperita can be triggered by many factors. Possible causes are lack of humidity, excessive exposure to bright light, salt and mineral build-up from chemically-treated tap water, and fertilizer burn.

Drooping Leaves

Drooping Peppermint leaves are usually an indicator that your plant is thirsty. In this instance, once hydrated, your plant will often perk back up. It may also assist to raise the humidity.

Be careful! Plants infested with pests may have droopy and curled leaves initially and would gradually acquire additional indicators such as spots, reduced development, and a general decline in health. If you suspect pests, always check the underside of the leaves.

Yellow Leaves

Yellow spots on Mentha piperita leaves can be produced by a lack of light, too much light, overwatering, underwatering, nutritional shortage, overfertilization, recent root disturbance, variations in temperature and humidity, insect infestation, and many other factors.

If you’re confused, don’t worry! Gardening needs trial and error to discover the best conditions for your plants, and even professional gardeners are constantly learning new things.

It is usually encouraged to prune off yellowing leaves so the plant won’t waste its energy trying to “save” the leaf instead of supplying nutrients to new leaves.

Root Rot

A typical cause of death for the Mentha piperita is root rot, which occurs when you overwater your plant. Keep in mind that you should only water once every 3 days in Spring and Summer. Increase watering if your mint starts to wilt or the top 1 inch of the potting soil is drying out rather than staying evenly moist.

Poor drainage is one other source of root rot, and this mint needs sandy or clay soil that drains well.

When selecting a pot for your plant, make sure there are enough drainage holes to allow excess water to flow through. Unglazed ceramic planters and clay pots can also effectively absorb moisture from the soil and gently release it into the air.

Similar Plants

Love Mentha piperita? Here are some other similar plant options you should try:

Spearmint – Spearmint, or Mentha spicata, is a type of mint native to Europe and southern temperate Asia. It is also known as garden mint, common mint, lamb mint, and mackerel mint. Its range extends from southern France in the west to southern China in the east.

Pineapple mint – The Lamiaceae mint family includes Mentha suaveolens, sometimes known as apple mint, pineapple mint, woolly mint, or round-leafed mint. It is indigenous to Europe’s southern, western, and Mediterranean regions. It is a herbaceous, erect perennial plant that is typically used for ground cover or as a culinary herb.

Conclusion

With Its pleasant, minty taste and health benefits, Peppermint, a perennial herb known for different uses, including medicinal purposes, is an aromatic ornamental plant that looks stunning indoors as well as in an herb garden. It has fragrant leaves. You’ll have no issue keeping this plant if you follow our care recommendations!

Have you got a Mentha piperita? We want to see it! Please submit photos to [email protected] so that we can share them on our blog.

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