Scented Mentha for Ponds and Water Gardens
On my retail Aquatic Nursery Lilies Water Gardens, I have a very special and popular collection of plants that are suitable for ponds and their surrounding areas. The three species I grow, are all quite different in growing habit but they all have one thing in common, and that is that they are heavily scented. This article is a guide to scented Mentha for ponds and water gardens.
Mentha Aquatica (Water Mint)
Mentha Aquatica is a native plant to the UK. It’s an invasive pond plant, so therefore not suited to small garden ponds. On the other hand, it is highly suitable for shallow margins of natural clay based ponds, lakes and damp wetland areas where it will thrive and attract dozens of Bees and Butterflies to its lilac coloured flowers. In the summer, the Bees and Hoverflies always flock to the Water Mint on my nursery as they search for the right flower in which to collect nectar and feed.
Mentha Pulegium (pennyroyal mint)
Penny Royal Mint is a rare, native UK pond plant that has a very strong aroma. When the leaves are crushed it gives off a strong scent of spearmint. This plant is a versatile, non invasive plant that grows in moist borders as well as shallow pond margins. In water, it will stay a lovely bright green over the winter months. It’s definitely an excellent choice of plant for wildlife ponds as it carpets shallow, muddy margins. In other words, it is an excellent pond entrance and exit for all kinds of pond life. In summer, it produces lovely upright whirls of lavender/pink flowers that are highly attractive to Bees and Hoverflies.
Mentha Requenii (Corsican Mint)
This is my favourite mint. Corsican Mint grows low into a carpet of tiny scented leaves that mould themselves around the contours of rocks, crevices and ledges, making it a excellent choice of plant, to use in rockeries and at the edges of waterfalls. It produces tiny flowers but unfortunately, they are too small to give this lovely plant any extra credit. Mentha Reqenii can also work very well as a scented replacement for lawn grass.
The three scented Mints above are available to buy throughout the spring and summer from my website www.lilieswatergardens.co.uk
Here’s to the Scented Mentha for ponds and water gardens!