Overzealous Catnip

by Cynthia

Flowering Catnip

Last fall I planted a single catnip (Nepeta cataria) in front of our deck. It completely died back during the winter and came back happy as can be this spring. A little too happy I might add. As you can see in the picture below it swallowed up a rosemary cutting that did not grow quite as fast as the eager catnip did.

Flowering Catnip and Rosemary

I should add that I cut this particular catnip back in the early summer to harvest and dry the leaves. The above picture shows all the growth it put on after it received a haircut. Quite a productive little guy wouldn’t you say?

I shouldn’t be surprised by its behavior though when I consider how prolific a Six Hills Giant catmint (Nepeta x faassenii‘Six Hills Giant’) has done in this garden the last two years. They are, after all, both related to mint. (My husband does not exactly appreciate this poor catmint as he finds it to be overgrown looking and rather wild despite me continually pointing out how much the bees love its flowers.)

Bumblebee on Catmint

I do believe I will be kicking myself come spring time 2009 though. I very foolishly got lazy when it came time to keeping the flowering catnip deadheaded. I am afraid it has probably dropped a thousand and one seeds by now. I may end up with an entire garden full of nothing but catnip babies. And I do not even have a cat to share it with!

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