Sunday, November 30, 2008

Growing organic mint from cuttings

Well, I love to have fresh mint tea, and some fresh mint can really improve some dishes, so I've been meaning to grow some for a while now. Typically I buy a bunch like this from the pasar malam (night market)

There are many types of mint, but I think this kind is spearmint, or Mentha spicata. It will cost about RM1.50 (apprx. 40 US cents), but the problem is that mint quickly wilts and goes mushy. No doubt it has also been sprayed with pesticides, etc.

I had been looking around for seeds or plants, and then someone told me that they are easy to grow from cuttings - so I did a quick Google and found this helpful guide (it's a pdf).

First, strip the stalks of the lower leaves (reduces water loss through transpiration apparently).

Secondly, plant in a pot - I just buried as much as I could in the soil as the roots will grow from the nodes where the leaves were.

Importantly, note that mint is very invasive - put it in a pot, or bottomless pot in the ground.

Apparently, you can also get the roots started in water (like here), so I'm trying that too.

It will be interesting to see the roots growing. I put some of my organic vermicompost in the water to supply nutrients.

It will take 2-3 weeks to get some results, will update then.


pikey said...

thanks for the great tips~~! I'm looking forward to the result. I wanna try them out too!

Next time can try basil, coriander, etc etc

Harmony said...

I heard you can just chew the mints and get fresh breaths

julian said...

*pikey* - you're right, I'll need to get some more pots though.

*Harmony* - makes sense to me! Don't forget to floss also though ;)

*Anton* said...

You have used the correct way. :)

Agreed with Pikey, basil is easy to grow too, plus it is a great flavouring to dishes.

Thanks for sharing. My 1st visit to your site. ^_^

Have a wonderful new week!


pikey said...

anton: oohh.. lemme go find a potted basil first...

julian said...

*Anton* - thanks, good to know :)

*pikey* - there's also 'vietnamese basil' aka 'vietnamese mint' which is nice :pp

Meems @HoeandShovel said...

Hello Julian, Your blog title caught my eye. I live in florida and incorporate many tropicals in my shady garden. For the first time I am growing mint this season. I too, put it in a pot next to my vegetable garden as I heard the rumors of it spreading voraciously. It is fun to use as a garnish also.
I do hope yours takes root and you have your own plants for whenever you want to make use of it.

julian said...

Hey thanks for dropping by :)
Hope yours works fine, from what I gather they should grow quite easily.