Nothing is quite as refreshing as the scent or flavor of mint on a hot summer day. Begin enjoying fresh mint right away by planting starts (young seedlings ready for transplanting). If you want to wait a little longer, start them from seeds.
Choose one or many different kinds of mints–peppermint, spearmint, lemon balm, pineapple mint, and catnip are some of the possibilities. Put them in an enclosed space or pots, or they’ll spread rampantly.
Growing Mint Indoors
If you want to grow mint inside the house, put it in your sunniest window. Most mint varieties need a lot of light. Eau de Cologne and Corsican mints are good indoor varieties. Pots or containers placed on decks or patios will provide a continuous harvest throughout warm weather.
Ideas for Using the Mint You Grow
- Peppermint is especially good in tea. To make mint tea, steep 1 tbsp. fresh leaves in 1 cup boiling water for 10 minutes. Drink the tea hot or pour over a tall glass filled with ice.
- Keep your iced tea from getting diluted while you drink it. You can make mint ice cubes by pouring the cooled tea into ice trays. Place a small leaf in each tray section first for a more decorative look.
- Include a sprig of spearmint in the water when cooking peas or carrots. It’s also good in fruit salads.
- More uses for the tea include: add to foot-bath or bath tub, and use as a hair rinse or facial steam to feel minty clean.
- Keep mint on hand for stomach-soothing, nausea, coughs, and headaches. It’s the perfect after-dinner tea.
- All types of mint help attract bees. Plant them near fruit trees to improve pollination and increase yield.