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Sunday, August 24, 2014

A Visit From Our Grumpy Gardener Proves Mint Worthy!

~Grumpy Gardener from Southern Living magazine

Hello, my gracious bloggers, and, if you're new to this blog...welcome to MyTexasGardens!  Just look around, and let me know what you think!  I know that summer is coming to an end for most, but, as we all know, Texas continues to enjoy the stifling 100° just a wee bit longer than some!
 (just kidding, about the enjoying part!)

And, school has already started almost cute little grandson, Scootie will be starting Kindergarten this week, and, I hope he has a wonderful time!

Sooo...I brought you here today, to share some news from Southern Living's 'grumpy gardener'.  It seems as though some gardeners are having 'mint invasions'.  A reader wrote in to the 'grumpy gardener' with his dilemma about mint running rampant in the garden, engulfing hostas, daylilies, verbenas, yarrows, and black-eyed Susans.  And, when they try to pull the mint up by sections, it just bounces right back!  And, the reader asks if they need to completely clear the garden in attempt to 'de-mint' it, or would that just be 'demented'?


You know, I raised some mint for a few years, and, this disgruntled gardener is telling the truth!  I had it in a pot at first, and when the plant grew thicker, some of the stems broke off, and the mint started growing on the ground!  It grows everywhere it falls, almost!  And, recently, my mother in Kansas City had the same problem.  She would dig and dig, and, still-the mint would show up in and outside the garden!

What's a gardener to do?

~Looks like Mint Julep overkill to me!

* Okay, playtime is over.  Here's what the 'Grumpy Gardener' had to say on the subject.

~And, I quote:

  "You have made two serious mistakes.  First, you're wasting fresh mint on tea, when you should be using it for mint juleps and disappointing!  Second, you should never, ever plant mint in a garden with other plants or it will spread faster than fleas at a flophouse.  Grow it only in pots or confined beds by itself.  To eradicate this hellacious herb, dig up all your good plants this fall, remove any traces of mint, and store the plants in pots.  Then spray the entire bed with broadleaf weedkiller.  Replant when you're sure the mint is dead.  Some sprigs of mint you missed will undoubtedly sprout next spring.  Quickly pull them up." 

Well, what do you think?  Are you willing to dig everything up as the 'Grumpy Gardener' advises, or just take your chances on pulling them up as you can?  I'm just grateful my mint finally disappeared.  And, as much as I enjoy mint in my tea, and cucumber dressing, next time I will try to confine it to one area, or one pot.  

Gosh, who'd have thought mint could be so plentiful?  I love the smell of freshly watered mint on a warm evening, as the breeze whooshes by, don't you?

Let me give my thanks to:

Southern Living Magazine
The Grumpy Gardener via Southern Living Magazine
yahoo images:  All photos were acquired from Yahoo Images
note:  the photo of my Scootie is my own!

***  And, thank you my dearest readers for your visit!  I am so glad to see, you-rain or shine!  If you get the chance, please stop and say hello.  I know, I know, there are some shy ones out there...
...myself included, lol!  But, remember, we're among friends!

And, here's my sweetie Scootie coming out of schute #1

 -the, 'MINT SLIDE'!

~ photo by Suzanne * August 17, 2014 * Fort Worth, TX

*** If you're wondering why our outdoor summer photos of Scooter always show him in long pants and long sleeve shirts, we have so many mosquitoes, and, long sleeved clothing is one of the precautions we take to prevent mosquito bites on this precious gift of ours! ***

***  See you next time.  Be safe, give love and laughter!

I just can't pass up a funny one, can I?


  1. Hi, Suzanne! Give me a mint and I'll take a whole hour! :) I told Mrs. Shady about your post on the topic of mint run amok in the garden and she reminded me that she's been growing mint for years and putting it in pitchers of iced tea. I asked her how she prevents the mint from crowding out other plants and flowers and she told me she is always careful to keep it in a separate container not incorporated into a planting bed. We have had similar problems with ferns and wild flowers. They are hardy, grow vigorously during warm weather and spread like wildfire.

    It's great to see Scootie Potter again. Thanks for explaining why he is bundled up on a 100 degree Texas day. You know something? I have seen fewer mosquitoes this year here in Central Florida than any other year I can remember. I hardly touched the can of repellent all season long and it wasn't because it was too dry. We've had regular intervals of rainfall but still the mosquitoes do not appear. I don't know if it's because the county is aggressively spraying neighborhoods or if there's another reason why they are so scarce.

    By the way, I hope you checked my second reply to your comment on my blog. I was very happy when Mrs. Shady's brother gave me several cuttings of his Kalanchoe succulents to bring home. They look great in my cactus room!

    Have a wonderful week ahead, dear friend Suzanne!

    1. Well, so good to see you, Shady! I did see your comment on receiving some Kalanchoe to bring back. They are great, and colorful plants-I just love them. And, I have actually grown them outdoors in pots. They can really get large. I would take small cuttings and keep them in the shed during the winter. When they would start blooming in the spring, I would bring them into the house to enjoy, then back outside again. In a shaded area, they will grow very well.

      Mrs. Shady is right about keeping mint in a separate container-mine ran amok out and over the container onto the ground. It is amazing! The following spring, the mint came back in the ground! Ferns are the same, as you said, and I do keep some in pots because they are so attractive.

      And, we try to keep the mosquito problem at bay by emptying water from plant trays and other catch all items around the yard, but, they sure are attracted to the water sprayer when I'm watering flower beds and pots. Poor Scootie would wear a ski parka just to get to be outside, lol! We spray him and then, put sunscreen on him too! He only got one bite the whole week, so, I guess we did okay!

      I'm glad you came by. Thank you so much for your comments and for sharing planting tips! You will be happy with your Kalanchoe! Have a great week, Shady! ♫

  2. Mint is everywhere here too in our areas, and ALL areas where green is present. Like fleas in a flophouse, how funny. But it does smell heavenly when mowed!

  3. Well, that makes more of us mint-worthy clients! That was pretty funny 'like fleas in a flophouse', I was a little surprised to see that phrase, haha! And, you're right Nancy, mint does smell heavenly when mowed. I like to brush my hand across Rosemary just after watering it. Christmas comes to mind every time I smell my Rosemary!

    Thank you for your visit Nancy. It's so good to see you. Have a great week!

  4. I did read your Blog yesterday, and yes, as much as I love Mint and use it, it really grows out of bounds, along with the Lemon Balm and the Chinese chives! Have to keep replanting the regular chives every spring, the but the Chinese stuff just takes over, am I sorry that I ever planted the seeds! It is really prolific.

  5. Hello Dear Suzanne, and many thanks for your visits. It was beaut to read your post and catch up once more.
    How about your dear Scootie starting kindergarten! He'll be well settled in by now I imagine. What an exciting time for him too... bet he's brimming with news about his new adventure whenever you talk to him. Another important milestone in his life.

    I really enjoyed reading about the mint. Oh yes, I think we've all fallen for the trap of planting it into the earth!! Pots are great but, as you say, those little escapees happen and it's off and away once more. It does have it's benefits though, it's perfume for one - I find it very uplifting. I had a chuckle at the name "Grumpy Gardener" :D)

    I'm really dragging my feet these days with my blogging but have had a few medical issues going on. Most especially, my poor Dad of 92 years - he was in hospital for 6 long weeks but amazingly has rallied as is looking forward to going home next week. Mum will be really pleased too. It's such a relief!

    Well that's about all for now. I hope your stifling heat subsides real soon. At the moment there's a lovely lot of gentle warmth coming into the kitchen and our birds outside are letting us know it's breakfast time! So I'll say cheerio for now - with my kindest regards, Susan :D) xx

  6. Hi Susan! It's so good to see you here. I, too love the fragrance of mint as you pass by with a nice breeze. It almost makes the over growth worth it. And, I love the smell of Thyme and Chamomille in the breeze too! Ahh!

    I'm sorry to hear that your Dad has been ill, and, glad to hear he has gotten to go home. It can be so stressful a time when a family member is ill. Our little Scootie says he likes his school pretty well, and has made a couple of new friends (no girls he says)!

    Well, I don't blog frequently, but I try to post something at least once a month. I've been pretty tired myself, with work and this heat. But, I still have a lot of stories upstairs, lol! Thank you so much for taking the time to come by. I have missed your fun blog posts, and was so excited to see you the other morning. In the mornings I check emails and stuff on my phone before I go to work, while having my coffee! And, it is a pain to type on the phone, but I didn't want to miss you.

    Take care, sip coffee, hugs, and hope to see you soon!♥


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