Common Name: mint 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Lamiaceae
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 1.50 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to August
Bloom Description: Lilac to purple
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Annual, Naturalize
Flower: Showy
Leaf: Fragrant
Attracts: Butterflies
Tolerate: Rabbit, Deer, Wet Soil


Best grown in loose, organically rich, moderately fertile, evenly moist but well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. Appreciates some afternoon shade in hot summer climates. Stems lose vitality and become somewhat leggy in too much shade. Adapts to a wide range of soils except dry ones. This hybrid plant will not produce viable seed. Propagation is usually done by cuttings or division. Starter plants are typically planted 6-10" apart. Cut back foliage in late fall. Plants are winter hardy to USDA Zone 5, but starter plants may be grown as annuals.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Mentha is a genus containing 25 species of perennial herbs which are primarily native to temperate regions of Europe, Asia and Africa. These mint-family members typically feature fragrant foliage, tubular to bell-shaped flowers, square stems, and spreading underground runners. Numerous hybrids have occurred naturally over time or have been developed in cultivation.

Genus name comes from Minthe or Menthe, a water nymph in Greek mythology, who was transformed by Persephone into a mint plant in revenge for Minthe's ongoing affair with Hades (husband of Persephone).

MARGARITA, commonly known as Margarita mint, is an interspecific hybrid that features lime-scented leaves. It was developed by Jim Westerfield (1935-2013) of Freeburg, Illinois. It typically matures to 6-12” tall but spreads to 18-24” wide by above-ground runners which creep along the ground rooting as they go to form an attractive ground cover. It is not considered to be invasive in large part because it does not spread by underground runners as is the case with many of the mints. Tiny rounded leaves (to 1/8" across) are bright green accented with bronze at the tips. Minute lilac to purple flowers bloom from the leaf axils in summer (late June -August). Flowers are very small, but attractive to butterflies.

Trade name of MARGARITA suggests use of a sprig of leaves to flavor or garnish a margarita.


No serious insect or disease problems. Mints are susceptible to powdery mildew, leaf spot, anthracnose, rust and stem canker. Watch for aphids, leafminers and mites.


Herb or vegetable gardens. Fresh sprigs of this mint from the garden may be used as garnishes or additives (aroma plus flavor) to food and/or beverage. Dried leaves are often used to make tea or incorporated into sachets and potpourris for aromatic purposes. Ornamental plant for border fronts and rock gardens. May be grown in containers or half-barrels.