Mint plants are the perfect starting point for a herb garden. They are usually contained in a pot because the species is extremely invasive, sending out runner roots to take over the surrounding soil. Choose one of the 600 varieties of mint, and give it plenty of water and sun to keep your mint plant thriving.
Learn how to grow Mint through video tips.
Step 1: Choosing Mint Varieties
ry apple mint for a more subtle flavor with fresh apple hints. This variety is popular in fresh salads and drinks.
Step 2: Starting a Mint Plant
1 Go to your garden supply store to buy a mint seedling.
Mint does not germinate from seed too easily, so only the most experienced gardeners should start from seed. Plant directly into potting soil or compost after you bring it home.
A garden store will have more varieties of mint; however, you may be able to find mint seedlings and plants at your local farmer’s market and supermarket.
OR take a cutting from a mature mint plant. Ask a friend if you can harvest from an existing mint pot or find one in a local garden. Cut approximately one cm above a stem junction with sharp scissors.
Opt to use a mint that is purchased from the fresh food section in your supermarket. It is not guaranteed that you will be able to grow a plant from each cutting, but it is a good way to use leftover mint if you are willing to experiment.
Fill a clean glass with water. Place freshly cut sprigs in the glass to grow new roots. Keep it in a warm, sunny place and wait for white roots to grow out of the cut stem.
Add water as needed to keep the glass full.
Wait until the white roots grow several inches long before planting. They can even extend to the bottom of your pot depth.
Step 3: Choosing a Pot
hop for a pot that is at least 12 inches (30.5 cm) in diameter. A mint plant needs plenty of space to grow.
Choose a pot with drainage holes in the bottom. A mint plant thrives in well-drained soil. Purchase a saucer to place below the pot to avoid staining your windowsill or patio.
Purchase an additional, much larger, pot if you want to pot mint and other herbs together. You can submerge the whole 12-inch pot in a larger pot, next to other herbs. Keep in mind that many species of mint will still find a way to take over the entire pot through the holes in the bottom of the mint pot.
If you want to plant it with other herbs, you will want to separate the herbs later in the season.
Step 4: Planting Mint in a Pot
Purchase gritty compost from a local gardening store. You can also combine potting soil with rich compost. Mint plants need rich and well-drained soil to thrive.
Fill the lower third of the pot with compost and potting soil.
Set your mint cutting or seedling in the pot. Curl the roots if they are too long for the pot.
Fill in the area around the mint with potting soil. Pack the area just enough so that the mint stands on its own.
Line a portion of your outdoor garden with plastic if you want to plant your pot in the soil, but want to discourage it from spreading. Then plant the entire pot into the garden soil, allowing the pot to extend five inches above the surface of the soil.
If possible, avoid planting it in the garden. Place it on a patio or on a windowsill to avoid spreading the mint plant.
Insert several wooden dowels next to the plant to give it support. These can be removed when the plant is thriving.
Step 5: Caring for Mint Pots
ater the soil so that it sinks down to the roots. Water it whenever it is dry for the first year. It should always have moist soil.
If you experience hot weather, you may need to water it several times per day.
Keep it in an east-facing location. It does best with six or more hours of sunlight, but also likes to be shaded from hot afternoon sun. If you have very little sunlight in the winter, it may die back.
Wait until the mint plant is full and the leaves are large before cutting and using the mint. Once it is doing well, frequent cuttings keep the plant full and the leaves strong in flavor.
Cut the top half of the plant with sharp scissors. Cut one cm above a stem junction and below any flower buds. Don’t cut more than one-third of the leaves at one time.
Never allow your mint plant to flower. It will put the nutrients into flower production and slow down leaf growth.
Divide your plant every few years. Cut the soil into fourths, and then plant each section into a new 12-inch pot. It would be best to give them room. If you don’t divide it, the plant will suffer and the leaves will not grow steadily.