Problems Growing Mint in Houston
Answered by: Richters Staff
Question from: Barbara Blackman
Posted: Before April 1998

Please, please help me. For years I’ve been trying to grow mint and it just keeps dying. I’ve planted it both inside and outside. I’ve planted it with other herbs and by itself. I’ve done everything I can think of, and it just won’t grow. Everyone else in Houston that plants mint has problems with it growing wild and taking over the entire garden, not me....

I’d prefer to grow it inside, but if you tell me it has to be outside, that’s where I’ll plant it.

Please tell me what to do - my iced tea just doesn’t taste the same without fresh mint in it.

Mint is among the easiest of herbs to grow, if the conditions are right. It does not do well in overly dry or overly shady locations. It does best in a loose, well-drained soil. The soil need not be particularly rich, though yearly applications of well rotted cattle manure are appreciated. Mint is susceptible to rust diseases which can devastate a mint patch during hot weather. If you noticed numerous brown spots on the leaves before the plants disappeared, then it was probably mint rust. You should try another area where mint has been never grown.

Try it outdoors, taking care to prepare the soil properly. You can also plant it in a large container outdoors, such as a barrel or large clay pot as long as there is sufficient drainage.

A particularly strong and reasonably well-behaved mint is english mint, a wonderful variety of spearmint. This mint is well suited for container growing.

Don’t waste your time trying to grow mint from seeds. True spearmint and peppermint do not come true from seeds. The imposters sold as ‘spearmint’ and ‘peppermint’ have poor flavour.

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