Are you tired of the mint in your garden taking over? We know how frustrating it can be. It seems like no matter what you do, nothing will get rid of it. That’s why so many people find themselves wondering…
Will RoundUp kill mint? RoundUp will kill mint, but several applications may be needed for total eradication. Spray plants in either early spring or late summer for best results as this is when they will draw more product down to the roots, but be careful not to let overspray reach any nontarget plants.
In addition to RoundUp, there are several other ways to take back control of your garden. Let’s learn how to get rid of mint so you can say goodbye to your mint problem once and for all.
1. Commercial Herbicides
Commercial herbicides are chemical-based products designed to kill weeds and other unwanted plants.
RoundUp is one of the most popular commercial herbicides available. Its active ingredient, glyphosate, targets an enzyme found in all plants that helps them absorb nutrients from the soil, preventing them from growing.
Be sure to wear protective clothing and gloves when handling the product and sure to read and follow all instructions on the label.
Some people have found that surrounding the target area with plastic sheeting effectively protects desired plants from chemical drift during application.
2. Natural Herbicides
When it comes to eliminating mint, natural herbicides are a great option. They get the job done without the use of potentially harmful chemicals.
Vinegar, Salt & Dish Soap Solution
This mixture is one of the most popular homemade weed killers. To make this solution, mix 1 gallon of white vinegar with 1 cup of table salt and 2 tablespoons of dish soap.
This solution should be applied directly onto the plant’s foliage on a sunny day when temperatures exceed 60 degrees Fahrenheit for best results.
It may take several applications before you start seeing results, but eventually, the plant will die completely from lack of nutrients and water absorption due to its waxy coating being stripped away by the vinegar/salt/dish soap combination.
Vinegar is a natural and inexpensive way to kill weeds and can be an effective alternative to chemical herbicides. The acetic acid in vinegar acts as a desiccant, drying out the leaves of the weed and ultimately killing it.
To use vinegar to eliminate mint, mix equal parts white vinegar and water, and add a few drops of dish soap to help the solution adhere to the weed leaves.
Spray the solution directly onto the plant, carefully avoiding any plants you wish to keep.
Borax, a naturally occurring mineral, can be used as an effective weed killer. It works by drying out the roots of the weeds and preventing them from absorbing water and nutrients, ultimately killing the plant.
To use borax to kill mint, mix 10 ounces of borax in 2.5 gallons of water and apply it directly on and around the plant.
Use caution when applying borax as it will harm other plants and poses safety hazards when used incorrectly.
3. Cover the Area Completely
Completely covering the area is an effective way to prevent mint from growing back. Place a thick layer of plastic sheeting or landscape fabric over the mint patch before adding a few inches of mulch. The mulch will help to block sunlight and keep the barrier in place.
4. Boiling Water
Want to know how to get rid of mint for free? Boiling water is an easy way to kill weeds without using herbicides, and it doesn’t cost a cent.
Simply boil a pot of water, and pour it over the affected area. Of course, this method is best for small mint patches.
5. Flame Weeder
Finally, flame weeding is another (surprisingly fun) method that can eliminate mint without using chemicals.
All you need is a propane torch, like this one designed for weed removal, and appropriate safety gear.
Light up your torch, and move slowly over each patch until the targeted plants turn brown and crispy. This process works best during dry conditions when there’s no wind present.
How Invasive Is Mint?
Mint is an incredibly invasive plant, capable of spreading quickly and easily by different methods.
- Roots – Roots known as rhizomes can grow up to 3 feet in length and send out new shoots every few inches.
- Layering – Stems will readily root wherever they come into contact with soil.
- Seeds – Mint seeds that can travel long distances on the wind or be carried away by animals.
The speed at which mint grows depends largely on the environment in which it’s growing. If conditions are favorable, it can overtake a garden or even an entire yard. In some cases, mint has been known to take over large areas within just a few years.
To prevent this from happening, it’s important to keep your mint plants contained and regularly check for any signs of growth outside their designated area.
Growing Mint in Pots
Growing mint in pots is a great way to enjoy this popular herb without worrying about it getting out of control. It’s easy to care for and can be grown indoors or outdoors.
You can even “plant” the pot in the ground as a way to grow it outdoors in a contained manner.
Here are some tips on how to get started with growing mint in pots:
Choose a Pot
Choose a pot that is at least 12 inches deep and wide with drainage holes at the bottom. If you plan on planting multiple varieties of mint, use separate containers for each type.
Think outside the box!
For years, I have successfully grown several varieties of mint in the holes of the cinder blocks bordering one of my raised beds.
They thrive every growing season, and as long as I trim them regularly so the stems don’t touch the ground, I’ve never had a problem with them “escaping.”
Use well-draining soil with plenty of organic matter like compost or peat moss mixed in. Make sure your soil pH is between 6.0 and 7.0 for optimal growth.
Planting Mint Seeds or Cuttings
Plant seeds 1/4 inch deep into moistened soil. Water lightly after sowing seeds, and keep them evenly moist until they germinate (usually within 7-14 days).
You can also propagate cuttings from existing plants by snipping off 4-inch stems just below a leaf node and placing them directly into the moistened potting mix. Roots should form within two weeks if kept consistently watered.
Light & Temperature Requirements
Place your potted mint plant near an east-facing window where it will receive bright indirect sunlight throughout the day. Temperatures should remain between 65°F – 75°F (18°C – 24°C) during the day, dropping no lower than 50°F (10°C) at night time for best results.
Water your potted mint regularly, but don’t let it sit in standing water as this could cause root rot. Check moisture levels often by sticking your finger about an inch down into the soil before watering again.
Harvest leaves from mature plants as soon as they reach full size, usually around 3 months after planting. Use scissors to clip off sprigs just above new growth points so that more leaves will grow back quickly.
Prune away any dead foliage throughout the season to encourage healthy regrowth.
Does RoundUp Kill Poison Ivy?
RoundUp is an herbicide that can effectively kill poison ivy. The active ingredient, glyphosate, interferes with the plant’s ability to produce essential proteins, ultimately causing plant death. To use RoundUp on poison ivy, apply it directly to the plant’s leaves.
Does RoundUp Kill Bees?
It was once believed that RoundUp was harmless to bees, but recent studies show that might not be true. The main ingredient, glyphosate, has been found to negatively impact an enzyme found in bees’ gut, reducing their ability to fight pathogens.
Also, RoundUp can harm the plants that bees rely on for food and habitat when sprayed carelessly or carried by the wind.
While getting rid of mint can be a difficult task, it is possible.
Commercial herbicides like RoundUp are effective in killing mint, but they also come with risks to other plants and animals.
Natural herbicides such as vinegar/salt/dish soap solution or boiling water are safer alternatives that can help kill off mint without damaging the environment.
Covering the area with plastic or landscape fabric and mulch is another option for controlling its spread.
Finally, using a flame weeder can be an effective way to eradicate stubborn patches of mint.
No matter which method you choose, getting rid of mint requires patience and persistence — so don’t give up.