HHH Blog

Mint Plants: Garden Friend or Foe?


Mint is aggressive. It can easily dominate other plants in a garden area within one season. While its roots are very close to the surface and easy to remove, they also break into segments leaving pieces in the soil to sprout a new plant later. A painful memory of mine was when a friend was so excited to have shared, aka planted, six ‘exciting’ varieties of mint in our garden. Deep sigh.



We all know that mint is a perennial that freshens our breath. Mint also adds flavor to foods and drinks. That’s why I pull, rinse and soak entire stems of mint in a container of water in the refrigerator during the summer. But did you know that smelling Peppermint oil has been shown to improve our memory as well as invigorate our cognitive processes? Eating mint leaves provides both nutrients and micronutrients. Drinking mint water can help you stay hydrated and can help ease side effects of indigestion like gas and bloating. Chewing mint leaves releases antioxidants, killing harmful bacteria in the mouth and preventing cavities and gum infections. Studies have shown that mint is able to kill bacteria, reduce stress, and fight cancerous tumor cells.



I plant mint in my parkway/hell strip between our public sidewalk and the street. The mint plant is not glamorous but it is vigorous enough to cover the soil, preventing weeds from popping up. You can also plant mint in a container to be set in a sunny spot. Mint needs less water than other container plants. Watch out though that its roots do not grow through the pot’s drainage hole and escape to an adjacent garden area! You can also choose an isolated area in full sun with pavement or mown grass on all sides. This allows the plant to be contained by impermeable or regularly mown surfaces.

Voila! Gain the benefits of this amazing plant, fresh, with no preservatives or added chemicals in your home, your food, and your life for minimal cost.