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Catnip, Catmint, Nepta - Plant

Note: The image is for reference purpose only.
Catnip is a species of the genus Nepeta in the family Lamiaceae, native to southern and eastern Europe, the Middle East, central Asia, and parts of China.
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Description for Catnip, Catmint, Nepta

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well drained soils in full sun to part shade. Thrives in dry soils and is very tolerant of drought. Site plants in full sun in northern areas.

Nepeta cataria is a short lived perennial, herbaceous plant that grows to be 50 to 100 cm (20 to 39 in) tall and wide, which blooms from late-spring to the autumn. In appearance, N. cataria resembles a typical member of the mint family of plants, featuring brown green foliage with the characteristic square stem of the Lamiaceae family of plants.The coarse toothed leaves are triangular to elliptical in shape.The small, bilabiate flowers of N. cataria are showy and fragrant, and are either pink in colour or white with fine spots of pale purple.

Common nameFlower coloursBloom timeHeightDifficulty
Nepeta cataria, commonly known as catnip, catswort, and catmint,White with pale purple spottingMay to September2.00 to 3.00 feeteasy to grow

Planting and care

Catmint herb is easy to grow. These plants are good for mass planting or edging and are suitable near vegetables as an insect deterrent especially aphids and Japanese beetles.Catmint can be grown in sun or partial shade with average, well-draining soil. They are even heat and drought tolerant, making them excellent plants for dry garden areas. Catmint is most often grown by seed or through division.

SunlightSoilWaterTemperatureFertilizer
Full Sun to Partial Shadewell-drained soilDry to medium60 to 70FApply any organic fertilizer

Caring for Catnip

  • Basic care of catmint is easy. Water catmint plants regularly until they become well established.
  • Mulch will help retain moisture and keep down weeds.
  • Once plants are a few inches tall, pinch them back to promote bushier growth.
  • Catmint blooms throughout summer and fall.
  • Deadheading spent blooms promotes additional flowering.
  • It can also help prevent reseeding.
  • Faassens catmint (Nepeta x faassenii) is sterile however, and doesnt require deadheading.
  • Shear the plants back to half their size in fall or following harvest.

Typical uses of Catnip

Special features: Borders, path edging, cottage gardens or herb gardens. Good for dry areas. Containers. Grow as an ornamental, for herbal use and/or for your cat.

Culinary use:

Ornamental use:

  • The plant is used for ornamental purpose.Nepeta cataria is cultivated as an ornamental plant for use in gardens. It is also grown for its attractant qualities to house cats and butterflies.
  • Nepetalactone is a mosquito and fly repellent.

    Medicinal use: Unverified information Due to the fact that catnip promotes sweating when used as an herbal tea, it was used for the treatment of nervousness, colds, influenza, and fevers during the Middle Ages. Catnip has also been alleged to aid with flatulence, diarrhea, colic, and other childhood diseases, as well as preventing miscarriages, premature births, and morning sickness.

  • References

    • http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/herbs/mint/catmint-plant.htm
    • http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempercode=e433
    • http://www.flowersofindia.net/risearch/search.php?query=Catnip%2C+Catmint%2C&stpos=0&stype=AND

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