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Pineapple Mint

Pineapple mint come from Apple mint. It smells so good, I liked the first plant so much I bought more. Mentha sauveolens ‘Variegata’ is a creeping plant that spreads across the ground like cover. This mint can be taken over by green leaves and if it does is reverts back to apple mint. I plan on cutting off the apple mint sprouts and planting them in other places. I thought it was neat that this plant has the potential to be two different types of plants.

You see, pineapple mint is a variegation of apple mint. Which means that it should produce cream and green leaves, if there are sprouts of only green leaves coming from it there is a possibility that it can take over and you will be left with only apple mint. I quite like both so I plan on cutting off green off shoots and planting the apple mint elsewhere. I also enjoy the fact that it is a mint and that means it is easily propagated.

I enjoy that it is a perennial and being a mint is able to grow in our soil. Turns out, our soil is not as full of clay as I had originally thought. Mints do amazing in our soil and if I neglect to water them for a day or a week they seem to bounce right back. This mint does not smell as minty as the others. In fact, I’d go as far as to say it smells like a fruit punch.

The butterflies seem to love it and fly around the flowers that I have planted it around. I have caught many different butterflies all around it. I started this off with one and planted it in our fairy garden. It did so well that I quickly obtained around six to eight more plants. Other mints have grown very well in other parts of my property but I used these as fillers in between trees and berry bushes.

All in all this mint can be used for many things. From teas to potpourri, pineapple mint is a fruity addition to any mixture. Although it can be used culinarily I didn’t see any recipes that specifically called for pineapple mint outside of smoothies and cocktails- not that those might night encourage you to plant some along your garden walkway. That will not stop me from trying to use it as a culinary herb. The reason that people aren’t using it as a culinary herb is because the smell is lost in the cooking process.

They did mention that it makes a good oil and I hadn’t really thought about that. I know that hopefully next year there will be enough that I will be able to experiment a little bit and figure out what these delicious smelling herbs are good for. I truly like the idea of turning it into an oil.

Other articles have said that it can go well in salads, but I haven’t put a leaf in my mouth. I might, it smells good enough to eat. They say that I shouldn’t harvest this until May to October, and I cannot wait. It does make me a little sad that I have to wait a month, but I suppose I can wait until this plant has grown enough that it might survive my collection.

Some sites state that you must keep the soil moist, but I am not going to lie- I don’t always water on time, when I need to or when the plant would prefer. The plants have done just fine so far, who knows this might be a false plant happiness. It’s happened before, I thought it was doing well and the leaves perked up before they dropped and died.

I feel as though this will provide a lovely ground cover and where I planted it- It’s needed. I need these pineapple mint plants to spread like wildfire in between the trees and bushes in order to push back the grass development. As you can see we spread out a large batch of wildflowers each year and this year we have twice as many come back. We hope one day we won’t have to spread those seeds and that the mints that we have planted all over- not just this one.

Some articles claim that picking the leaves early in the morning is beneficial. The reason is because as the sun beams down on the leaves it changes the smell of the plant. The smells returns to it’s original glory the next day, but as the temperatures rise and the sun beams down it does cause the smell to stress out and not seem as potent.

They say that pineapple mint is good for sauces, fruit salads, and other dishes that require a pinch of sweetness.

I looked for recipes and found that pineapple mint goes well with chicken and lamb. There is some mention that it goes well as an added ingredient to a ham glaze, but most people talk about additions to mojitos or other alcoholic beverages. There are a few mentions of adding it to smoothies as well, but I am not exactly sure how that will work and how much pineapple mint will be required for one smoothie.

If you’re looking for something that is deer resistant and attracts pollinators, this mint is amazing. It can be grown in beds, pots and even wild- like I’m doing. It is and easy grower and seems to do well in zones 5 to 9.

And it all started when I put it in our fairy garden. It did not take long for this little herb to spread out and that just tickled me. I bought quite a few more. I planted them so that they could spread out- I gave them plenty of room to spread but this one will be my primary momma. I will not let her spread out, instead she will foster a generation of pineapple mint and with that we’ll cover the ground.

I can’t wait. Until next time…

Author: M. S. Hatfield

Working hard towards personal goals in permaculture, food security, native plants and their importance to our ecosystem. Together we can share our knowledge a grow a community or just talk about wicked cool plants. I'm still learning. If I ever get credentials I'll post them here.

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