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Mint - How to Grow

 

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Mint is a widely used culinary and medicinal herb, and is an essential addition to your herb garden. 

Mint plants are a genus of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae, and they are found around the world due to their easy-growing nature. Mints are very aromatic and almost exclusively perennial, with a habit of spreading happily if left unchecked. 

Because Mint is so prone to spreading it is better grown either in a pot or be planted in sunken bottomless containers in a gap in your border or vegetable garden ensuring the the top of the pot is higher than the level of the garden. 

Mint dies back over winter, but new fresh growth will appear between late spring and mid-autumn. Pick regularly to ensure plenty of new growth for your cooking and summer drinks this will also help keep plants compact.

It is best used fresh, but you can preserve leaves for using over winter using the following method, pick fresh young shoots, wash well, allow to dry then chop into small pieces and add to an ice cube tray which you can then fill with water and freeze. Simply use as many ice cubes as you need to the pan for your recipe.

Keeping your Mint Plant Healthy 

Mint can get pot bound which reduced the plants ability to produce lots of fresh new leaves to make the most of your plant you should divide it during the Autumn or Spring if you can do this every year. Lift your plant out of its pot you can use a bread-knife or even a saw if your plant is big enough! Cut the root ball in half tease the roots out a little and re-plant either both pieces to give you two new plants or use one half to take root cuttings and increase your crop.  

Mint should be fed monthly with a high nitrogen fertiliser or use slow release fertilisers to keep it at its best.

Avoid planting different varieties together as they can lose their original flavours. 

Check the mint for its hardiness rating some like pineapple mint may be better over-wintered in a green house if you  far north or in a particularly exposed area.