Mentha longifolia (Horse Mint)

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Scientific Name

Mentha longifolia (L.) L.

Common Names

Horse Mint, Wild Mint, Biblical Mint, Silver Mint, Brook Mint, Water Mint, Long-leaved Mint

Synonyms 

Mentha longifolia var. longifolia, Mentha candicans, Mentha fluvialis, Mentha grisella, Mentha mellifluens, Mentha mollissima, Mentha sedunensis, Mentha serrata, Mentha spicata subsp. longifolia, Mentha spicata var. longifolia, Mentha suavis, Mentha tenorei, Mentha uliginosa, Mentha vermiciformis, Mentha virgultorum, Mentha weinerniena

Scientific Classification

Family: Lamiaceae
Subfamily: Nepetoideae
Tribe: Mentheae
Genus: Mentha

Flower

Color: Pale purple or white
Bloom Time: Summer

Description

Mentha longifolia is a spreading perennial up to 4 feet (1.2 m) tall, with hairy, green to grey-green leaves with a musty, minty smell. They are up to 4 inches (10 cm) long and up to 0.8 inch (2 cm) wide. Branched, tapering spires of tiny, pale purple or white flowers are produced in mid to late summer.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 6a to 9b: from −10 °F (−23.3 °C) to 30 °F (−1.1 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Mint is one of the few culinary herbs that grows well in shady areas, although it can handle full sun if kept watered.

Cuttings of Mint will root easily in soil or water and mature plants can be divided and transplanted. However you can start new plants from seed. Sow outdoors in late spring or start seed indoors about 8 to 10 weeks before the last frost. Keep soil moist until seed germinates.

Mint prefers a rich, moist soil with a slightly acidic pH between 6.5 and 7.0. If the soil is somewhat lean, top dress yearly with organic matter and apply an organic fertilizer mid-season, after shearing.

To contain the roots and limit spreading, you can grow Mint in containers, above or sunk into the ground. Be careful to keep container Mints from flopping over and touching the ground. Stems will root quickly, if given the chance… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Mint Plants

Origin

It is native to Europe excluding Britain and Ireland, western and central Asia and northern and southern (but not tropical) Africa.

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