Catnip, which are known botanically as Nepeta Cataria, are a type of herbs that can easily be grown at home. Continue reading to learn the basics of growing catnip as well as common mistakes to avoid along the way.
Best Time to Plant Catnip
This will depend largely on your local climate, but as a rule of thumb, begin to plant the catnip seeds in spring, once all chances of frost have passed. This is the best time to ensure that the seedlings survive the weather.
To check when catnip are most likely to thrive in your area, see the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map. If you live outside the US, do a quick search for ‘plant hardiness zone + [city]’.
How to Plant Catnip the Right Way
There are a number of things to consider that will help you avoid some of the common mistakes of growing catnip in your home garden.
Often overlooked, your soil can have a huge impact on how well your catnip grow. Generally, your soil should be loamy, sandy, well-drained. Soil PH levels should be around 6.1 to 7.8.
18″ apart. 20″ apart. The seeds should be sowed at a depth of about .25″. For each plant, be sure to sow at least a few seeds to ensure that at least one of them will germinate.
Begin thinning your catnip seedlings thin plants to 20 inches apart when they are 2 inches tall. .
How Much Sunlight is Needed to Grow Catnip
The amount of sunlight is another key to a successful harvest. Too much sunlight will dry out your catnip. Not enough sunlight will stunt your its growth or even kill it.
Ideally, your catnip should be getting full sun, which means as much sunlight as you can possibly give it, or at least 6 hours or more.
How Much to Water Catnip
As you’ve figured by now, a lot can have an impact on how well your catnip do, and the amount of water is no different.
Ideally, the soil should be damp to touch; not soggy or bone dry. If the leaves on your catnip begin to change colors or start to look droopy, you need to adjust how much water you’re giving it.
Unfortunately, if you give it too much or too little water, you can kill it, so it’s best to just keep an eye on it and water as needed.
How Long Does it Take Catnip to Germinate and Grow?
Now the fun part begins and you get to watch your catnip grow.
It takes approximately 8-12 days to germinate, and a total of 70-75 days from seed to harvest.
When to Harvest Catnip
The best time to harvest your catnip is once catnip grows to 6 to 8 inches tall.
Catnip can grow up to about 6 to 8 inches tall.
What Can Catnip Be Used For?
Food Use: Use catnip leaves in your tea and cats won’t be the only ones who can’t resist this herb!
Flavor Profile: Lemony-mint.
Can Catnip Grow in Pots and Containers?
Yes, you will ideally need a 12″+ containerfor each plant. This can help control weeds and keep your plant from growing out of control.
It also gives you the flexibility to move your catnip around if you need to adjust sunlight or bring it indoors to avoid harsh weather conditions.
Are Catnip Safe for Bees?
Yes, catnip are safe for bees.
According to GreenPeace.org, bees pollinate human food crops that make up about 90% of the world’s nutrition.
Given their importance in our ecosystem and food supply, I feel it is important to note that growing catnip is bee-friendly.