I had this herb for more than a year now and I have not found any practical use for it until recently. About two weeks ago, I had a mild headache which lingered for almost 2 days. As I didn’t want to take any off-the-counter drug yet, I thought of an herbal remedy which my mother had used to treat us with when we were kids– a peppermint rub. After gathering a bunch of fresh peppermint leaves, I crushed and mixed them with some baby oil. Then I rubbed a little bit of the mixture on my forehead. In a few minutes, the headache was gone.
Peppermint has a lot other medicinal uses and WebMD lists some of them. This list includes herbal cures for common stomach pains, bad breath and infections. It is also known to relieve sinus clogs, fever, headache, nausea and skin itchiness. Peppermint can also be used for culinary purposes, but mostly as a neutralizer to counteract the smell of fish and meat.
Plant Care Tips
As a member of the mint family, this herb spreads quickly and tends to invade other plants. To prevent this, most gardeners would plant peppermint separately in a pot. Peppermint thrives well in a medium-sized container with enough holes to allow proper draining of excess water.
Pruning is needed when the tip of the vine extends wildly at the sides. Pruning encourages stem growth, and is good for the plant to develop new leaves.
The herb does not require too much space, even when fully grown. While it can thrive even with partial sun, peppermint loves a daily dose of sunlight especially in the morning. If grown in containers, a regular boost of compost material every 4 months is needed, as the soil nutrients gets depleted naturally over time.
Fortunately, the peppermint is not prone to pest attack. In fact, its pungent aroma has been known to repel some common pests in the garden. Water the plant as needed, and make sure the soil is always moist, but not soggy.
To propagate, peppermints can be grown from seeds or cuttings. For me, it’s easier to propagate this herb from cuttings, because the herb rarely produces flowers or seeds. To learn how to propagate herbs from cuttings, please refer to my other blog post about cuttings.
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