Mint is a great herb to grow in your home and garden. It has a lot of uses, and it’s very easy to grow. Mint is a very hardy plant that loves water. You’re not likely to kill it, even if you do mistakenly overwater or underwater it. Even so, it is possible to overwater or underwater it. Mint likes its water concentration to be just right. So, exactly how much water do mint plants need?
Below, I cover exactly how much water mint needs whether its grown in the garden or in pots. I also discuss signs of overwatering and underwatering and whether mint needs fertilizer and sun to grow.
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Why Grow Mint?
Growing mint is a great idea because it has so many uses. Most people grow mint to use in their cooking. Mint is a very popular herb that adds a cool, refreshing flavor to any dish. Growing your own mint will save you a lot of money at the grocery store.
Many people also grow mint because of the smell. Mint has a great aroma, so people will dry the leaves and use it around their home as potpourri. Additionally, pests hate the smell of mint. Because of this, mint is commonly used in gardens as a pest deterrent.
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How Much Water Does A Mint Plant Need?
If you want to grow mint, you’ll need to know how much to water mint plant. Mint needs a lot of water to be happy. Still, you don’t want to give it too much. Soaked soil can cause problems with your plant.
But, making sure that your mint is thoroughly watered at all times helps the roots to better establish themselves. It also helps the plant become more drought resistant in the burning summer heat.
In general, you’re going to water your mint when the soil feels dry. You never want to let the soil dry completely or the plant will begin to wilt. But, if the top inch of soil is dry, it’s time to water it.
I’m going to give you some guidelines on how often you need to water your plant in each scenario. It’s important that you don’t use these guidelines as a set schedule. You really want to pay attention to the soil to tell you when to water. How often you need to water is going to change throughout the year as the climate changes.
So, how much water should you give your mint plant in every situation?
Mint Water Requirements In The Garden
Growing your mint in the garden is a bit easier than in a pot. Mint is a very hardy plant, so it can usually take care of itself without much attention. However, you still want to ensure that your plant is getting plenty of water.
Generally, mint grown in the garden will need to be watered 2-3 times a week. However, remember that you should water it whenever the soil becomes dry. During the summer months, you may have to water it more frequently, especially if your summers get exceptionally hot.
Mint Water Requirements When Grown In Pots
Mint can be grown in pots both inside the home and outside. Watering conditions will be similar, but there are some small differences.
A good rule of thumb to remember is that smaller pots need water more often. Smaller pots hold less soil, so they will dry out much more quickly. The larger the pot, the less often you’ll need to water your mint. It’s best to plant your mint in a pot that is at least 12 inches in diameter.
Mint Water Requirements in Pots Inside
How often you’re going to water your potted mint depends a lot on the climate of your house. Mint needs a lot of water. Its soil should be moist at all times, but don’t water it so much that the soil is soaked.
When you keep your mint in a pot, you must be a lot more attentive to it. You’re going to need to keep a closer eye on the soil than you would if you were growing it in the ground.
You’ll generally need to water your plant 1-2 times a week, or once every 3 days. You should also use a pot that has adequate drainage. In the event that you accidentally overwater, the excess will simply drain out of the pot and won’t hurt your plant.
If you notice your plant is wilting, you may not be watering it enough. Increase watering if this is the case, especially if the temperatures are high.
Mint Water Requirements in Pots Outside
If you’re growing your mint in pots outdoors, they’ll need a bit extra water. It’s likely that the outdoor temperatures are significantly higher than those in the home. Increases in temperature means that you need to increase watering. If your plants are potted outside, you’ll likely need to water them 3 times a week.
As I mentioned before, just keep a close eye on the soil. That’s the real indicator of when you need to water. If the top inch of the soil is dry, give your plant some more water.
The best time to water your plants is in the morning. This gives your plant plenty of time to soak up the water before the temperature rises too high.
Propagation: How Much Water Does Mint Need To Grow?
If you’ve thought about growing your own mint, you’ve probably also wondered how to do it. One of the ways you can grow your own mint is in water!
Mint doesn’t need soil to grow initially and will do fine in a shallow dish of water. It’s best to use a clear jar or glass so that you can monitor the water and your plant.
You’ll take a clipping from your mint plant and place it into the jar of water. You’ll only need a small amount of water — about 2.5 centimeters deep is ideal. You’ll also want to keep the water fresh, so change it every day. Never leave your mint in the same water for more than 3 days.
In about a week, you’ll notice the roots starting to sprout. Once the roots have reached a couple inches long, you can transplant your mint into soil.
Signs Of Overwatering Mint
Mint likes a lot of water, and it also likes well-draining soil. If you use the proper soil, it is quite difficult to overwater it. The best soil to use for mint are those with a lot of organic matter. Organic matter retains moisture, but also helps the soil to drain effectively.
If you do happen to overwater your plants, though, you’ll also notice some wilting. This wilting is a symptom of root rot.
Root rot is when the roots of your mint begin to decay. This is often caused by a fungus that your plant gets, or it can be caused by depravation of oxygen. If left untreated, it will eventually cause your plant to die.
Waterlogged roots are deprived of oxygen and are not able to operate as they’re supposed to. Being logged with water also prevents the roots from soaking up other forms of moisture and nutrients, further damaging the plant. If this goes on for too long, the leaves will start to become yellow, and they will begin to wilt.
Other symptoms include brown patches on the leaves, or small and pale leaves. You may also notice stunting of the plant’s growth, and the overall health of your plant will suffer.
If you actually pull your plant out of the ground, you’ll notice the roots are going bad. The roots will appear a sickly brown or black color. They will also appear soft and squishy. When roots are healthy, they should be white in color and will be firm to the touch.
Signs Of Underwatering Mint
The most common symptom of underwatering is wilting.
Wilting will appear as curled or drooped leaves. Plants will wilt because it reduces the surface area which reduces the amount of water they lose.
If you forget to water your mint for a long period of time, you’ll notice that the leaves start to turn yellow. Many times, the yellowing will begin at the bottom of the stem rather than at the leaves. When wilting begins at the stem, it becomes more difficult to reverse any damage that’s been done to your plant.
Fortunately though, mint is a very hardy plant and can often survive long periods of drought. If you notice your mint beginning to wilt, give it a good watering. It should return back to normal in no time.
Also, if you notice your mint is wilting, make sure to remove it from any direct sunlight. A wilting plant is a struggling plant. It doesn’t need the added stress of overbearing light. If your plant is potted, simply move it to a location with partial shade if it isn’t there already.
Underwatering mint while it is young can cause the roots to grow shallow. When the roots grow shallowly, they won’t establish properly in the soil. When the roots are closer to the surface and are ill-established, the plant will not be able to handle periods of drought nearly as well.
Does Mint Need Fertilizer Regularly?
Mint typically does not need fertilizer. In fact, it’s best to avoid fertilizer with mint. It can often cause more harm than good.
The only time I’d recommend fertilizing your mint is if your soil is very nutrient poor. Fertilizer can sometimes be helpful for plants grown inside as well.
Does Mint Need Full Sun?
The amount of sun your mint plant needs doesn’t really change whether it’s grown inside or outside. But, where it can get the light from is a different story.
Mint Sunshine Requirements Outside
Mint likes light, but it shouldn’t get too much of it. Mint can tolerate living in full sun conditions, but it’s certainly not ideal. To grow its best, mint should receive partial shade.
If you don’t have an area of partial shade, it is possible for mint to live in full sun. However, you’ll need to make sure that your watering your mint more often.
It’s also best to avoid too much shade. Too much shade can prevent your mint from growing as healthy as it can and will stunt its growth.
Mint Light Requirements Inside
Providing partial shade can be a bit more difficult to achieve if your plant is growing inside. After all, we’re usually limited to where we can place our plants inside.
To solve this, you can place your mint in direct sunlight by a window for 3-4 hours a day. After that, you can move it away from the window where it can get a break.
You’ll likely need to rotate your plant every day as well. Rotating the plant ensures that the plant gets an equal amount of sunlight all around. Plants naturally grow towards the light. If you never rotate it, you might find that your plant is growing lopsided.
Other Maintenance Tips For Growing Mint
As I said, mint is a very easy plant to take care of. Still, it does have some particular requirements. Here are some other articles you can check out for more mint maintenance:
- Does Mint Need Full Sun? Where To Plant Mint
- Mint Plant In Winter: Can It Survive?
- Exactly How To Grow Mint From Seed
- When To Plant Mint: What You Need To Know
- What Grows Well With Mint: Mint Companion Plants
- How Does Mint Spread? And How To Stop It
Final Words on How Much Water Mint Needs
As you can see, how much water your mint plant needs depends largely on the climate where you live. Generally, mint can be watered 2-3 times a week. However, that can change depending on the temperature, the soil, and where the mint is planted. For best results, check the soil daily for dryness. If the soil is too dry, make sure to water your mint. Just remember not to worry too much — mint is hardy and can handle almost anything.
Want to learn more? Click here for where to plant mint and here to learn how long it takes to grow. You can also find all my guides to growing mint here.
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