Growing Mint

Spearmint, peppermint, mojito mint, chocolate mint, so many tasty mint choices!  Use mint to flavor meats and fish, toss in a fruit salad or green salad and add to beverages.   

Mojito-mint by Midwest Gardening.jpg

Sun Requirements:  Full sun to part shade

Soil:  Light loamy soil with good drainage, but mint is especially fussy.

Moisture:  Average requirements, help keep soil moist with mulch.

Spacing:  Plant two feet apart

Feeding:  Requires little in the way of feeding, but will appreciate a light feeding of liquid fertilizer every few weeks to support heavy harvesting.

Growing from Seed:  Most mints are hybrids and must be grown from cuttings or starter plants to ensure a true variety you desire.

Problems:  Although mint may occasionally have trouble with mites, slugs or whiteflies, the biggest problem with mint is quite simply controlling its’ spread.  


Mint grows so voraciously it has to be considered invasive.  For this reason you must ruthlessly harvest and prune to keep it from overtaking the garden.  Pinch or snip off as much as you want as often as you want.  No matter how much you harvest, mint will continue to rapidly produce.  Frequently snipping the stem tips will keep spreading in check.  However, for fullest intense flavor, harvest young leaves just before the plant blooms.  Mints are perennial and hardy at least to zone 5.  Many varieties easily survive winters up to zone 3.  


Loosely wrap mint leaves in slightly damp paper towel or produce storage bags.


Freeze mint into ice cubes to add to tea and other beverages.  Dry mint to use in potpourri.  Leaves can be dried and stored in an airtight container.  Loose mint leaves turn black when frozen.

Sharon Dwyer