Peppermint no longer tastes like peppermint?

Starrling(7 Central Arkansas)April 5, 2014

Hi guys! I've got a bit of an issue with my new peppermint plant. I bought it about a week or more ago and potted it in a Miracle Grow potting mix. It's in the house now sitting next to the window and I've started to notice the peppermint smell decreasing. Rubbing my hand violently on the leaves no longer makes a peppermint smell, it's more of a chemical smell than anything. My chocolate mint, however all I have to do is run my hand through it and it will smell like it everywhere. So, we tried to taste the peppermint leaves and my girlfriend describes the taste similar to alcohol with a bit of minty aftertaste. Any ideas what could be going on?

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It needs sun.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 12:17AM
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CA Kate

Most herbs need SUN and heat to develop the oils that give the taste and scent to the plant. Winter herbs rarely taste as strong as in the summer.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 2:22PM
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floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

Yes - get it outdoors where it can breath. Inside it will grow sappy, etiolated and much less tasty.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2014 at 2:44PM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

Early spring plants that are extra bloated with water don't have the same taste either. Check back posts - no flavor is a spring complaint. I would imagine indoor plants to also have the same complaint. When possible, harden your plant off and move it outdoors.

As far as a chemical smell, I don't use Miracle Grow for any edibles. I opt for organic or as chemical-free as possible soil and seed-starting mixes. I view it as a GIGO issue - "Garbage In, Garbage Out."


    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 1:43PM
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Starrling(7 Central Arkansas)

Just a quick update. I put both my peppermint and chocolate mint outside for a couple of hours to begin hardening them off. They're almost dead at this point. The plants are extremely wilted. I don't know how their health diminished so quickly, but I don't know that there's much I can do now. Should I continue trying to harden them off?

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 10:25PM
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floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

Can you describe the conditions outside? Sunny? Hot? Windy? Have you watered them?

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 3:43AM
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Starrling(7 Central Arkansas)

I suppose that would've been helpful. Yesterday before I put them outside, they were already pretty terrible looking. They had adequate water, but not so much it drowned them. First the chocolate mint started to go, then the peppermint. So I put them on my balcony. It was cloudy, so I figured it'd be best to let them have a little light, but not too much yet since they had been indoors. After about two hours, it had started to rain and I was not home, so they got a little wet which made them even more droopy from the rain clinging onto their stems.

This post was edited by Starrling on Wed, Apr 9, 14 at 11:16

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 10:03AM
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Just a thought-that pot is huge for plants of that size. Lots of danger of over-watering.


    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 11:21AM
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Starrling(7 Central Arkansas)

They were extremely root bound when I bought them, so I wanted a bigger pot to put them in. The soil is barely damp, not wet or drenched. Would it not survive from something like that?

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 11:41AM
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missingtheobvious(Blue Ridge 7a)

Unfortunately, "a couple of hours" is too long for the first day of hardening-off. Though it makes a difference to put a plant in shade or dappled shade rather than full sun, even too much wind can have negative affects on a plant used to windless indoors conditions.

So give the plant a rest from outdoors for a day or so, make sure the soil hasn't dried out (wind can be dehydrating), and try again when the plant recovers from the wilting.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 8:48AM
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