Growing Tips for Herbs: Why is My Mint Dying?

| 4/14/2009 4:21:22 PM


Q: Why are my herbs dying?

A: Although mint (Mentha spp.) is easy to grow, I’ve killed a few mint plants for many different reasons. Whether you have better luck or a light brown gardening thumb like me, these tips will improve the health of your mint.

All mint varieties are “easy” to grow because they can flourish in almost any lighting condition, but mint performs the best in full sun. The general ideal temperature range is between 60 to 80 degrees.

The herb likes a medium-rich soil—not too moist and not too dry. The pH should be around 5.6 to 7.5. If you live in a dry climate, you might want to water more frequently. The opposite goes for wet tropical climates, such as southern California or Hawaii.

A few common types of mint are spearmint, which is often used in dishes; peppermint, which is commonly used in teas as it is stronger than spearmint; and apple mint, which is used in teas and salads. The main differences between these various types of mints are their scents, flavors and appearance.