More decorative than useful as a herb. I thought the Indian Mint (Satureia douglasii) was outstanding as a trailing plant. Although not a true mint, I understand it is used more in Indian cuisine and not so well known or used anything else. It’s easy to grow and fairly hardy. I first bought it in a garden centre a few years ago but have never seen it in one since. I had it as a trailing plant in a basket but left the basket as it was, at the end of the season. Except for a few brave weeds which made it through our harsh winter, there didn’t look as if there was much life left on anything else.
Spring saw a tiny green shoot appearing amongst the weather-worn, previous year’s leaves. However, I also found a supplier on eBay and bought a fresh plant, just in case the tiny bit of life didn’t retain it’s original display. Both of them flourished and I was happy to see the long trailing stems and smell the sweet perfume that reminds me so much of the herb, basil.
I never had much inclination to try to cook with it, it didn’t look herby and didn’t want to spoil the display of long stems of small round leaves and tiny white flowers, they looked pretty as they were, and the perfume was quite awesome.
This year was even better for them, even if it was other parts of the country which claimed the Indian summer whilst our part of the world northwards, got more like the Indian monsoon.
I had tried taking cuttings of the stems but they never seemed to retain the looks of the parent plant so decided this year to propagate them by layering, taking one of the long stems and pinning it down to compost in a seed tray. It didn’t take too long before the plantlets were potted on into their own pots. Some didn’t make it so perhaps I was just too quick, severing them from the main stem and not giving them time for the roots to establish well enough. I tried again with a bit more patience this time and it has done well. There is a beautiful strong plant as a result.
It does need to be trimmed though, but those lovely exquisite, scented leaves won’t go to waste. Some of them have been left for another day or two and some which have already been collected, are drying ready to try out as Indian Mint Tea which is apparently used to alleviate headaches.
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