how to grow peppermint from seed

How to Grow Peppermint from Seed: A Complete Guide

Peppermint is a popular herb that has many uses and benefits. It is a hybrid of watermint and spearmint, and it has a refreshing flavor and aroma. Peppermint can be used for making tea, oil, candy, toothpaste, and more. It can also help with digestion, headaches, colds, and stress.

But did you know that you can grow your own peppermint from seed? Yes, you can! Growing peppermint from seed is not only fun and rewarding, but also economical and eco-friendly. You can have fresh peppermint leaves anytime you want, and you can avoid buying packaged or processed products.

In this article, we will show you how to grow peppermint from seed in five easy steps. We will also give you some tips and tricks for germinating, planting, caring, harvesting, and using peppermint leaves. By the end of this article, you will be able to enjoy your own homegrown peppermint.

Key Takeaways

StepWhat to Do
1Germinate peppermint seeds in moist paper towels or seed trays
2Plant peppermint seeds in pots or garden beds with well-drained soil
3Care for peppermint plants by watering regularly, pruning often, and fertilizing occasionally
4Harvest peppermint leaves when the plants are about 12 inches tall and before they flower
5Use peppermint leaves for making tea, oil, candy, toothpaste, and more

How to Germinate Peppermint Seeds

A photo of peppermint seeds soaked in a moist paper towel inside a ziplock bag

The first step to growing peppermint from seed is to germinate the seeds. Germination is the process of sprouting new plants from seeds. Peppermint seeds are very small and hard to handle, so they need some extra care and attention for germination.

There are two main methods for germinating peppermint seeds: the paper towel method and the seed tray method. Here is how to do each method:

Paper Towel Method

  • Take a few sheets of paper towel and moisten them with water
  • Place some peppermint seeds on one sheet of paper towel and cover them with another sheet
  • Fold the paper towel into a square or a rectangle and seal it in a ziplock bag
  • Label the bag with the date and the name of the seeds
  • Place the bag in a warm and dark place, such as a cupboard or a drawer
  • Check the bag every day and spray some water if the paper towel feels dry
  • After about 10 to 14 days, you should see some tiny sprouts emerging from the seeds
  • Carefully transfer the sprouted seeds to small pots with potting soil

Seed Tray Method

  • Fill a seed tray with moist potting soil or seed starting mix
  • Sprinkle some peppermint seeds on top of the soil and lightly cover them with more soil
  • Cover the tray with a clear plastic lid or wrap
  • Label the tray with the date and the name of the seeds
  • Place the tray in a warm and bright place, such as a windowsill or a greenhouse
  • Water the tray gently every day or whenever the soil feels dry
  • After about 10 to 14 days, you should see some tiny seedlings growing from the soil
  • Thin out the seedlings by removing the weakest ones and leaving only one per cell

How to Plant Peppermint Seeds

A photo of sprouted peppermint seeds being transplanted into small pots

The second step to growing peppermint from seed is to plant the seeds. Planting is the process of transferring the germinated seeds or seedlings to their final growing location. Peppermint plants can grow in pots or garden beds, as long as they have enough space, soil, water, and sun.

Here is how to plant peppermint seeds in pots or garden beds:

Pots

  • Choose a pot that is at least 8 inches in diameter and has drainage holes at the bottom
  • Fill the pot with well-drained potting soil or compost
  • Make a small hole in the center of the soil and place one sprouted seed or seedling in it
  • Cover the hole with soil and press it gently
  • Water the pot thoroughly and let it drain
  • Place the pot in a sunny spot indoors or outdoors

Garden Beds

  • Choose a spot in your garden that gets at least 6 hours of sun per day
  • Prepare the soil by loosening it with a fork or a shovel and adding some organic matter such as compost or manure
  • Make some small holes in the soil about 12 inches apart and place one sprouted seed or seedling in each hole
  • Cover the holes with soil and press it gently
  • Water the bed thoroughly and let it drain
  • Mulch the bed with straw, wood chips, or leaves to retain moisture and prevent weeds

How to Care for Peppermint Plants

how to grow peppermint from seed

The third step to growing peppermint from seed is to care for the plants. Caring is the process of maintaining the health and growth of the plants. Peppermint plants are easy to care for, but they need some regular attention and protection.

Here are some tips and tricks for caring for peppermint plants:

Watering

  • Water your peppermint plants regularly, especially during hot and dry weather
  • Keep the soil moist but not soggy, as peppermint plants do not like wet feet
  • Check the soil with your finger before watering, and water only when the top inch feels dry
  • Water the plants deeply and slowly, and avoid wetting the leaves
  • If you are growing peppermint in pots, make sure to empty the saucer after watering

Pruning

  • Prune your peppermint plants often, as they tend to grow fast and spread widely
  • Cut back the stems by about one-third every few weeks to encourage bushy growth and prevent flowering
  • Remove any dead, diseased, or damaged leaves and stems as soon as you notice them
  • Use sharp scissors or shears to make clean cuts, and sterilize them before and after pruning
  • You can use the pruned leaves for making tea or other products

Fertilizing

  • Fertilize your peppermint plants occasionally, as they are not heavy feeders
  • Use a balanced organic fertilizer such as compost tea or fish emulsion once a month during the growing season
  • Follow the instructions on the label and apply the fertilizer to the soil around the base of the plants
  • Do not over-fertilize your peppermint plants, as this can reduce their flavor and aroma

Pest and Disease Control

  • Protect your peppermint plants from pests and diseases, as they can affect their quality and yield
  • Some of the common pests that attack peppermint plants are aphids, spider mites, whiteflies, and cutworms
  • Some of the common diseases that affect peppermint plants are powdery mildew, rust, leaf spot, and root rot
  • To prevent or treat pest and disease problems, you can use natural methods such as neem oil, diatomaceous earth, baking soda, or garlic spray
  • Avoid using chemical pesticides or fungicides on your peppermint plants, as they can harm their health and flavor

How to Harvest Peppermint Leaves

A close-up photo of fresh peppermint leaves being cut for harvesting

The fourth step to growing peppermint from seed is to harvest the leaves. Harvesting is the process of collecting the leaves from the plants for use or storage. Peppermint leaves are best harvested when they are young and tender, and before they flower.

Here is how to harvest peppermint leaves:

Timing

  • Harvest your peppermint leaves when the plants are about 12 inches tall and have at least six pairs of leaves
  • Harvest your peppermint leaves in the morning, after the dew has dried but before the sun gets too hot
  • Harvest your peppermint leaves before they start to flower, as this is when they have the highest concentration of essential oils
  • You can harvest your peppermint leaves throughout the growing season, as long as you leave some stems and leaves on each plant

Method

  • Use sharp scissors or shears to cut off the stems with the leaves attached
  • Cut off the stems about one inch above a pair of leaves or a node, where new growth will emerge
  • You can harvest as much or as little as you need at a time, depending on how you plan to use or store them
  • You can use the fresh leaves right away or store them for later use

How to Use Peppermint Leaves

A photo of fresh peppermint leaves steeping in hot water to make tea

The fifth and final step to growing peppermint from seed is to use the leaves. Using is the process of enjoying the fruits of your labor. Peppermint leaves have many uses and benefits, both culinary and medicinal. You can use them fresh or dried, whole or chopped.

Here are some ways to use peppermint leaves:

Tea

  • One of the most popular ways to use peppermint leaves is to make tea
  • Peppermint tea is refreshing, soothing, and delicious
  • It can help with digestion, headaches, colds, stress, and more
  • To make peppermint tea, you will need:
    • Fresh or dried peppermint leaves (about one tablespoon per cup)
    • Boiling water (about one cup per serving)
    • Honey or sugar (optional)
    • Lemon juice (optional)
  • To make peppermint tea, you will need to:
    • Wash and chop the fresh leaves or crush the dried leaves with your fingers
    • Place them in a teapot or a mug
    • Pour boiling water over them and let them steep for about 10 minutes
    • Strain out the leaves and add honey or sugar and lemon juice if desired
    • Enjoy your peppermint tea hot or cold

Oil

  • Another way to use peppermint leaves is to make oil
  • Peppermint oil is aromatic, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory
  • It can be used for aromatherapy, massage, skincare, and more
  • To make peppermint oil, you will need:
    • Fresh peppermint leaves (about two cups)
    • Carrier oil (such as olive, coconut, or almond oil) (about one cup)
    • A glass jar with a lid
    • A sunny spot
  • To make peppermint oil, you will need to:
    • Wash and dry the fresh leaves and bruise them with a mortar and pestle or a rolling pin
    • Place them in a glass jar and cover them with carrier oil
    • Seal the jar tightly and shake it well
    • Place the jar in a sunny spot and let it infuse for about two weeks
    • Shake the jar every day and check the scent and color of the oil
    • Strain out the leaves and store the oil in a dark glass bottle

Candy

  • A third way to use peppermint leaves is to make candy
  • Peppermint candy is sweet, minty, and fun
  • It can be used as a treat, a gift, or a decoration
  • To make peppermint candy, you will need:
    • Fresh or dried peppermint leaves (about one cup)
    • Granulated sugar (about two cups)
    • Water (about one cup)
    • Corn syrup (about one-fourth cup)
    • Red food coloring (optional)
    • A candy thermometer
    • A baking sheet lined with parchment paper
    • A knife or scissors
  • To make peppermint candy, you will need to:
    • Wash and chop the fresh leaves or crush the dried leaves with your fingers
    • Place them in a saucepan with water and bring to a boil
    • Reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes
    • Strain out the leaves and measure the peppermint water (you should have about one cup)
    • Return the peppermint water to the saucepan and add sugar and corn syrup
    • Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until the temperature reaches 300°F on a candy thermometer (hard-crack stage)
    • Remove from heat and stir in a few drops of red food coloring if desired
    • Pour the candy mixture onto the prepared baking sheet and spread it evenly with a spatula
    • Let it cool slightly and cut into pieces with a knife or scissors
    • Let it cool completely and store in an airtight container

Conclusion

Growing peppermint from seed is a rewarding and enjoyable hobby. You can have your own supply of fresh peppermint leaves for making tea, oil, candy, and more. You can also enjoy the benefits of peppermint for your health and well-being.

We hope this article has helped you learn how to grow peppermint from seed in five easy steps. If you have any questions or feedback, please leave them in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you.

Happy gardening!

About The Author

See also  How to Grow Your Own Tropical Paradise from Plumeria Seeds
Samantha
Samantha

I'm Samantha, a plant enthusiast who has been growing plants for years. I believe that plants can make our lives better, both physically and mentally. I started growit.wiki to share my knowledge about how to grow plants. I want to help others enjoy the beauty and benefits of plants.

Articles: 405