manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

Old problem, but I am clueless

I have a small herb garden that I use for aromatics, butterflies and fun stuff.

One of my favorites is old fashioned MINT..... we all shudder. Yep. It is crawling all over my yard. Are there any fixes for this? I keep pulling and cutting, but it is tougher and faster than I.

What does one do to control this beast?

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

It's a bit late to give you this advice now but, with mint you really have to watch it and dig the roots up. You are now having the problem that mint invariably causes. It even takes over your lawn

The only way to rid yourself of it is to dig up as much root matter as you can find and they are extensive. Get your friends to come over in a work party one day and give them some food and drinks for payment and do a real hack job of your yard.

Poisons will only get you into a whole sleugh of problems and won't solve the mint problem for you anyway.

Good luck!
Feed the soil, not the plants.

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

Thank you. I did have mint in my yard in years past, but as it bacame a problem, I systematically got rid of it.

I love the root pulling party! As I see growth spread to undesirable areas, I do pull the root system as I can find it. If I redouble my efforts on the new growth (party time), can I keep the plant in check by some measure? What should I try? Would I chop the main root system with a shovel?

User avatar
Jess
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1023
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

manicmower wrote:Thank you. I did have mint in my yard in years past, but as it became a problem, I systematically got rid of it.
can I keep the plant in check by some measure? What should I try? Would I chop the main root system with a shovel?
The easiest way is to sink a large pot in the ground with the mint in it. This is not fool proof as it can escape but if you lift the pot every other year or so, take out the excess and repot, it should stay confined.
Other than that plant it in a nice pot above ground. I do this with some spearmint so it is to hand when I want it for cooking. I have it sitting in a shady spot near my back door next to the kitchen.
Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

Thanks again! The planted pot idea is grand. I will make that my next gardening project. I have just gotten this years Pineapple Sage for my herb garden and I am afraid the mint will ruin it.

User avatar
Jess
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1023
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

manicmower wrote:Thanks again! The planted pot idea is grand. I will make that my next gardening project. I have just gotten this years Pineapple Sage for my herb garden and I am afraid the mint will ruin it.
Ooh, pineapple sage is wonderful. Smells so yummy.
Do you buy it new each year? It is very easy from cuttings if you want to save some pennies (cents?)
Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

I absolutely adore the stuff, but I cannot always find it from year to year. All I do with it is sniff it, let the butterflies and mantis have at it, stuff chicken with it and bundle bunches of it .... with those gorgeous scarlet flowers of course..... to hand and dry in my kitchen. Makes a lovely wall accent along with my Zinias.

How do I save mine for next year. I bought several plants for me and then some for my boss who has never heard of it. She is in for a surprise.

User avatar
Jess
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1023
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

It is an evergreen perennial, hardy to zone 8. You can just dig it up and overwinter as a houseplant on a sunny window or in a heated greenhouse. Do not forget to harden it off before you put it out again.
If this is not an option (as they can get to quite a size) take semi-ripe cuttings whenever is convenient. They will take very easily, grow very quickly and give you a nice sized plant for the following year. :D
Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

I've heard of pinapple mint but, not pineapple sage! That's great, I'llkeep my eye out for it.


Regarding the work party, it can be lots of fun. You can have music, good food, lots of hard work and a grande old time. Of course people will have to bring shovels and what not but, it will be fun.

I like Jess's idea of doing it in a pot in the soil.

I have grown mint in the ground before and you just have to watch it and dig the roots out periodically, don't forget about it or what has heppened to you will happen again.
Feed the soil, not the plants.

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

Yeah, I am likin' the party idea. I think I will have all the tools on hand and not tell everyone what they are being invited to do. That way they can't back out... snicker.

You will LOVE the Pineapple Sage. The Pineapple Mint has an undertone of mint, but the P Sage smells like pure Pineapple. It is dreamy!

My herb garden is not very big. I try to pick some things for their flowering as a draw to the butterflies and hummers, but I also like to get the most aromatic stuff I can find. That's for me! My Lavander did horribly so I put in Russian Sage. I like it. I have the P Sage and Mint.

Some years I go with the Greek Oregano (bunnies love to snuggle in it), sometimes Rosemary. I have put in Borage. The flower is GORGEOUS, but I struggled with the plant.

What is your fav?

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Oh, I'm a big fan of Lavendar, I've done mint in the past and I love sage. Lavendar would be my absolute favourite though

Second would be sage. I have a sage plant that I rescued from my dad's place some years ago and I have 2 purple sage plants. Pineapple sage sounds amazing, I'll definately keep a look out.
Feed the soil, not the plants.

User avatar
Jess
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1023
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

Not only does it smell delicious Opa, it has really pretty flowers on it too.
There are also tangerine and raspberry flavour. They are all Salvias but not what you would necessarily think of as sage.
https://images.google.co.uk/images?hl=en&q=sedum&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&tab=wi
Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

What area are you in? I am in SW Pa. and I have a good bit of clay in my soil. I dig and dig, and I do amend the soil, but my Lavender just would take.

I also did St John's Wart. I like the little yellow star flowers, but no smelly's so I moved on.

I'm expanding my herb garden. I stuck some Black-eyed Suzies to take up space last year. I am moving that, digging up the Mint to pot it, then Im off to the nursery for something new.

My R Sage is very mature now, and this year I found FOUR Ootheca... the egg cases for Praying Mantis. I am so proud to be a MOM!!! Mr and Mrs Mantis hung out in the sage and on my shed all last year. I can't wait to see the kids!

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Oh lucky you! I've never even seen a preying mantis or a mantid fly in the wild.
Feed the soil, not the plants.

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

Oh, I see you are in Vic, BC. Cool!

The info says that there are 50 - 200 mantids per case. WOW!! I'm excited.

Do you have Mantids up there or are they just not in your particular area? They have been a rare sightings around here, but over the past several years, I and my neighbors have been gardening our brains out. The number of butterfly, hummers, special birds (I have feeders everywhere) and neat/helpful bugs has really grown.

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Good for you guys, have you read the beneficial insects thread in the permaculture forum?

We do have Mantids up here I've just never seen one.... in the wild.
Feed the soil, not the plants.

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

I am interested in the beneficial bug thread. Where would I find it. I am new to the site and haven't done much investigating. I don' see anything that says "permaculture".

Thanks

wolfie
Senior Member
Posts: 249
Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2008 8:45 pm
Location: Chester, VA

I hate my grass... am thinking about digging up a spot and planting some mint to take over my grass area, but not sure my landlord would be happy LOL
Shan -
Who is learning to garden and loving every minute of it!

manicmower
Full Member
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 11:34 pm
Location: SW Pa

Not a bad idea! I do like the smell of fresh cut grass, but when I hit a patch of mint that has made its way into my lawn.... on its way to some grand adventure, I'm sure.... it puts a big smile on my face. I'm like a big ol' Glade air freshener for the neighborhood. LOL! Maybe the landlord won't mind. [/b]

Return to “Herb Gardening Forum”