Sunday, March 6, 2016

Growing Peppermint in North Texas

Peppermint for Every Herb Garden

Of all of the plants in our garden, peppermint is one of the easiest to grow.  It seems happy with the simple life we have provided for it.  I realize that just because something grows well, it doesn't necessarily  mean that you want it in your garden, but mint is one of those things most people do want.  It attracts beneficial insects like bees with it's lovely flowers and deters some other less wanted ones - namely ants.   I know people who have trouble growing mint in our neck of the woods, but I find that with a little shade, mint will thrive.  The mint at our place gets morning shade and afternoon sun.  It will flourish in the spring and autumn when the temperatures are mild and hang in there during the summer and winter months.  With just a little planning, you can have fresh mint all year long!

In the prairie regions of Texas, peppermint appreciates dappled sun or partial shade.

Propagate Your Own Peppermint

Did you know that mint is one of the easiest plants to propagate?  Just take cuttings and stick them in water.  Be patient and change the water out every few days and in a week or two, your cuttings will have roots.  In the meantime, the mint cutting make a lovely addition to the kitchen and puts a fresh, spring smell in the air.  I have even direct sewed mint cuttings into a water retaining medium such as vermiculite and had it do just fine.  Nurse it along for a little while, making sure to keep the growing medium moist, and in a few months you will have more mint to plant outside, or keep inside in a pot for an attractive addition to the kitchen herb garden.

How to Use Peppermint:  Food and Medicine

Many people love to put fresh mint in their tea or just chew on it for the robust flavor.  You can add it to chocolate cookies or brownies for a refreshing taste surprise.  Mint is great in salads and as an herb used in cooking.  Here is a link to a few recipe ideas to get you started:

Did you know that mint also has some nice medicinal properties?  It can give your body a boost when you're fighting a cold and help settle an irritated stomach.  Follow the links below to learn how to use mint in ways other than just in your tea.,,20307175,00.html

Happy gardening!

No comments: