Should I plant mint?

genghisbunny(9)April 13, 2013

As I have been researching companion planting, I keep running across mint as a beneficial to tomatoes, peppers, melons, beans, it seems just about everything! It is also a deterrent to ants, which I have prolifically in my yard. I have not wanted to plant mint in the ground in my garden/yard area because it is so invasive. I have known people whose mint sent rhizomes under concrete and 15 feet away where it pops up. But as I study mint, I'm starting to think that it wouldn't be any worse to have mint in my yard than the weeds that already exist out there. I think my main concern is it taking over my six raised beds. Should I plant it at all, plant it in just the walkways, or plant it everywhere? Thanks!

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laurell(8 - Washington)

Get some galvanized tubs (or large plastic nursery pots) and bury those in the ground and plant the mint in there. You get most of the companion benefits and much less of the invasive problems that way.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 1:33PM
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oliveoyl3

Yes, agree only in a pot even if you want lots of mint. We like it for tea, deer & mole repellant, so have several pots of a few types of mints in 3 locations here. Planted some in the ground next to the gravel driveway over 10 years ago & still digging it out.

Mint likes moist soil, so you might want to use a saucer under the pot or enrich the buried planter with compost & mulch to retain moisture. I have some in small pots setting inside tea pots around our strawberry garden. The roots stretch down through the bottom of the pots into the water reservoir below. I've also used a cache pot for summer and it worked well. It's handy to have close by for tea.

I read to score the plants inside the pot like a tic tac toe board in the early spring if you don't want to repot it yearly.

Last year, I placed a recently repotted large black planter near our tomatoes, but didn't sink it and during our dry summer didn't water it enough. It's a misnomer that mint grows anywhere. It's resprouting again this year, but not as vigorous, so I cut into it. That encouraged more new growth & it's looking a lot better!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 1:28AM
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CathyJ(USDA-8 West WA)

Don't plant it ANYWHERE, you will never get rid of it!
Seriously, if you simply must have some, plant it in a pot, put a saucer under it and then watch it like a hawk!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 9:11PM
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CathyJ(USDA-8 West WA)

Don't plant it ANYWHERE, you will never get rid of it!
Seriously, if you simply must have some, plant it in a pot, put a saucer under it and then watch it like a hawk!

P.S. I have never found mint to be a deterrent to anything; ditto, garlic: I have actually purchased garlic sets full of aphids!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 9:13PM
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Biblegeek119NW

I agree with everyone here. Plant it in a pot and set it by your plants. They are very invasive and I don't understand they are expensive at the grocery store. You can use your mint not only for tea but as a bug repellant (rub on your skin). So many uses for your mint after your garden is done. Check this http://www.gardensablaze.com/HerbMintMed.htm

I love it and planted some in pots last year, they survived the winter outside :)

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 11:33PM
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birdtalker(z7WA)

I have mint in a barrel with a miniature rose. The mint keeps away aphids and does not spread this way. Would like to grow some in a pot on my deck also.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 2:09AM
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hemnancy(z8 PNW)

I have lots of mint and don't find it a problem in dry ground. Don't put it where it will get watered. It doesn't seem to seed to areas removed from the plants. Lemon Balm is another story. I would say never plant it even in a pot because the seed does seem to get around.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 6:35PM
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