lucky bamboo, herbs, flowers and life
Wednesday, April 19, 2006,8:21 AM
Planting Herbs for summer - part 1: Mint
There are hundreds and hundreds of variety of mint available to choose from like peppermint, spearmint, Kentucky Colonel ( cross of spearmint and apple mint bred specially for juleps), orange mint, pineapple mint, chocolate mint etc. Choose your mint.

If they are given suitable condition they can easily take over your garden. So my advice is to either plant the mint in a pot or in a container bound in your garden.

Best time of the year to plant the mint is early spring and can be harvested for 6-8 months when planted outside. You can buy small mint plants from your local nursery as soon as the danger of frost is over and the ground can be worked.

The plant can grow 2 to 3 feet in 3 months time and will produce violet blooms in mid- to late summer. The leaves have very strong fragrance and can be used for garnishing salads, meat, beverages etc.Site selection.
Mint like partial shade to full sunny location. Choose a location so as it can grow freely without disturbing other plants as it can easily kill them. Soil should be well-dug, moist, fertile and water-retentive, but not water-logged.

For planting in pots, use a clay or plastic pots atleast 10-12 inches in diameter and fill with compost-enriched potting soil.

For ground, plant different varieties of mint in different location to avoid cross pollination. Make sure the soil is moist. Buy only couple of plants of each variety as they will spread easily.
Place each plant about 1 to 1.5 feet apart and water them thoroughly.
Water the plant regularly for 2 more weeks.

Care. Rust is the only problem seen in mints. Check the plants periodically to see any sign of disease and remove the plant if rusting occurs. Chemical spray should be avoided to keep the plant suitable for consumption.

Pinching the top of the plant will cause more leaves and branches to grown and make your plant bushier.
posted by RM
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