Mint is a fresh, fragrant, attractive and exceedingly practical herb that is exceptionally effortless to grow. This helpful hardy perennial will grow just about anywhere and spreads like wild fire. As a result even container mint plants often need to be harvested regularly, however harvesting at the proper time can result in more flavorful aromatic mint and a healthier plant to continue your self sufficient herb supply for years to come.
Harvesting Mint for Fresh Use:
Of course one of the major advantages of having fresh herbs growing at your home is you can harvest them fresh for use. Mint in its various forms can freshen breathe, zing desserts, excite vegetables dishes and so much more. Fresh mint can be harvested at any time. While different types of mint may vary slightly in maturity time typically 60 days from seed is sufficient. You can harvest a mint plant that is immature but never remove more than 2/3 of the plants foliage. To harvest simply clip the top most, fresh leaves from your plant when needed. Newer mint leaves will differ in flavor than old leaves. Many herb gardeners find limiting the amount of leaves on each branch to 4-6 seems to produce a less bitter flavor in mint. Harvesting by use mint also promotes growth in the plant and keeps overgrow in check.
Harvesting Mint for Dry Storage:
As mint is a voracious growing herb the average person does not need as much mint as even one plant can produce for on the spot use. While mint makes an attractive houseplant and air freshener on its own as stated larger mint plants tend to obtain a bitter flavor. Mint leaves can be harvested in bulk and frozen or dried to keep your plant small, sweet and growing vigorously. Bulk mint should be harvested just before the plant comes into bloom. Harvesting in the morning is recommended. If you wish to collect seeds you will need to wait until the plant flowers, allow them to turn brown and dry. Once dry simple remove the flowers, crush them and harvest the seeds from the remains. After harvesting seeds you can harvest the mint as well however the flavor may be weaker and less sweet.
To dry mint wash with cool water and hang in bunches in well ventilated area. When dry remove and store. To freeze wash with cool water and lay on flat surface in the freezer, once frozen package and store in a cold location.
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How to grow and harvest mint