Mint Plant Herb Varieties
Mint Plant Herb Uses – Insect Repellent & Room Freshener
Mint plant or menthe are aromatic perennial plants belonging to the family Lamiaceae. They have erect and branched square shaped stems and have wide spreading stolons underground and above the ground. The leaves are in opposite arrangement and have serrated margins. These herbs grow well in moist soils and in shaded areas. They can be invasive as they spread without control. To control the spreading of mint, they can be planted in deep bottomless pots or containers.
There are about 13-18 varieties of the mint plant and some of the commonly used varieties are
- Peppermint- Mentha piperita
- Spearmint or curly mint- Mentha spicata
- Wild mint or banana mint- Mentha arvensis
- Orange mint- Mentha citrata
- Apple mint or pineapple mint- Mentha suaveolens
- Asian mint- Mentha asiatica
- Basil mint- Mentha x piperata citrata ‘Basil’
- Chocolate Mint- Mentha piperita ‘Chocolate’
- Ginger Mint -Mentha x gracilis
- Thai Mint- Mentha arvensis ‘thai’
- Pennyroyal- Mentha pulegium
- Water mint or marsh mint- Mentha aquatic
- Horse mint- Mentha longifolia
- Gray mint- Mentha vagans
How to Grow Mint in Pots?
Planting mints in pots reduces the invasiveness of the plant. Visit a garden store or nursery to find the seedlings of your preferred variety of mint and plant directly to the pot containing the potting mixture. You can also take cuttings from a healthy mint plant and place them in a glass of water till they develop new roots. When the roots reach a few inches of length, plant them in the pot.
How to Grow Mint Indoors?
You can grow mint indoors in a pot containing soil or in a bottle containing water. Use a good potting mix or a mixture of equal parts of peat, sand and perlite, if you are growing in pots. Water it well and place the pot in indirect sunlight. The ideal indoor temperature will be 65-70 degree F during day time. To grow the plant in water, cut the plants at a length of 5-6 inches from a healthy plant and place them in bottles or glass containing water. The plant should receive at least 4-6 hours of direct sunlight. Occasionally fertilise the plant with water soluble fertiliser.
How to Use Mint in Kitchen?
Mint is used as a natural flavouring in culinary art. Fresh as well as dried leaves are used in the kitchen.
- Fresh mint is used as a flavouring agent in various beverages, teas, candies, syrups, ice creams and for garnishing various food items.
- Mint is used in various alcoholic drinks to add flavour or as a garnish.
- It is also used in various desserts and for making mint chocolates.
- Mint, when added to food, can improve digestion.
- It is added to various gravies to enhance the flavour.
- It is used in Indian cooking to prepare side dishes or chutneys.
Mint can be used as a good insect repellent in the kitchen. The menthol smell repels flies and ants. It can also be used as a room freshener to remove any bad smell inside your kitchen. Some mints are mainly used in the preparation of medicines.