Why is my mint plant dying is a common question asked by mint plant owners. However, you might be under the impression that mint plants are resilient and can resist harsh conditions, but this is far from the truth.
Several reasons, like lack of sunlight, improper care, fungal attack, and more, tend to kill the mint plant. If you need to know which of the reasons is causing your mint plant to die, keep reading to find out.
Our expert opinion will also lend some solutions to the problem.
- Why Is My Mint Plant Dying?
- What Are Ways To Prevent Mint From Dying?
Why Is My Mint Plant Dying?
Your mint plant is dying because of poor soil conditions, lack of water, excessive sunlight, poor air circulation and poor sanitation. In addition, it would also be the result of nutrition deficiency, heat exhaustion, inadequate growing space, and lastly frostbite injuries.
– Poor Soil Condition
Mint plants thrive in well-drained soil with an adequate amount of organic content. If the soil is too dry or has little organic matter, it will not provide the nutrients the mint plant needs. Add compost or other organic matter to the soil to improve and enhance its conditions.
Overwatering, old soil, and root damage are all issues that impede nutrition. And that’s when your poor mint finally ceases growing and dying.
In addition, the soil may have been contaminated or been prone to diseases and through this medium, different pests or fungi can multiply. Hence, the mint plants are susceptible to several fungal diseases, which can kill them suddenly. Flea beetles may also be a problem, as they feed on mint leaves, which can cause them to turn yellow and die.
– Lack of Water
Water is essential for any living being to thrive and survive. Lack of water can eventually cause death. So, ensure your mint plant gets enough water throughout the day by watering it deeply at least once daily. A dying mint or mint wilting may occur due to dehydration caused by water drainage from soil or inadequate watering.
– Over Watering
Excess water can also be problematic, leading to the rotting of roots, which can kill the mint plant. Giving your plant a lot of water may seem to be caring, but you’re drowning it. Plants require oxygen in their roots; without it, the roots die and decay.
In addition, overwatering would lead the plant to have any type of fungal disease and this is because the environment or the medium is wet, and in this medium the fungus would develop.
Common signs of the fungal disease include pale and deformed shoots in the spring season. On the stems and leaves, there are dusty orange pustules. The dusty yellow or the black bumps could come next, due to the over hydration. Hence, the green plant may lose leaves as large sections of the leaf tissue deteriorate.
Check for common problems like insects or fungal diseases if you notice your mint dying. Yellow leaves, slow-growing mint, and wilting are some of the most common signs of fungal disease.
– Excessive Sunlight
There are many reasons why your mint plant would be declining. Among the most common ones is excessive sunlight. Mint plants love sunlight but only during the early hours of the day.
Mint needs at least 6 hours of light a day to be healthy. If you’re growing your mint in a pot – you’ll need to place it where it can get at least six hours of light a day. Maybe on a patio or porch. If you’re growing your mint in a pot—make sure the pot drains well.
Even though sunlight is essential to growth, however, too much sunlight can cause problems for your mint plants. Mint plants do best in low light levels, so keep them away from direct sunlight during the hottest day. Excessive sunlight can also encourage fungal growth and disease in your mint plant.
– Poor Air Circulation
Mint plants are prone to fungus and pests if the air around them is too humid. Keep the area around your mint plant well-ventilated to help prevent condensation and keep pests from building up.
The lack of air circulation is one of the most common issues in mint plants. Note that the mint plant is vulnerable to death due to several reasons, and this is one of them.
The plants are very organic and must receive all the necessary mineral elements. A plant can survive only with the right amount of water, nutrients, and light. However, without air circulation, the plant will die.
– Poor Sanitation
Make sure to clean your mint plant regularly, as dirty environments can lead to fungal growth and disease. Use a good organic fungicide or insecticide on your mint plant every week or two, if necessary.
Furthermore, dry your mint plant properly after watering it, as overwatering can cause fungal diseases. Keeping your mint plant healthy and disease-free is critical to healthy plant growth.
Mint rust is a widespread fungal disease that damages garden mint, marjoram, and savory. The fungus generates dusty orange, yellow, and black patches on leaves and shoots deformation.
– Nutrient Deficiency
To thrive, your mint needs a steady supply of nitrogen, phosphate, and other minerals. The lack of nutrients will restrict new growth, and whatever little your mint produces will be vulnerable. Nonetheless, this is one of the common reasons why your mint plant may be dying or leaves turning yellow and slowly it will degenerate when the nutrients are deficient.
– Heat Exhaustion
This aromatic green plant is resistant to cold conditions, but not too hot weather climate. Being a plant acclimated to moderate regions, your mint will grow limp and dehydrated if overheated.
It is also possible to “cook” the plant leaves as you would be by planting it in a dark container and then placing it in the sun, mainly if the pot is made of plastic. The roots become overheated and die, taking the remainder of the plant with them.
– Inadequate Growing Space
If this plant is not given enough room to flourish, it will suffer from a lack of nutrients and oxygen, and this would be a reason that might kill the plant, because of the lack of aeration
You should leave at least 18 to 24 inches of space among mint plants, or else it will be under some stressful conditions. They will compete for nutrients and supplies if they do not.
– Frostbite Injuries
Mint is a strong pant that can withstand some cold. In reality, mint can withstand subzero temperatures and prolonged snowfall in outdoor beds before returning in weed-like profusion in the months of April and May.
Different problems, however, arise for indoor plants, especially if it is not in the right condition, weather-wise, to find itself growing in. With a quick snap freeze, your mint could become completely dead. In this case, the plant usually dies in the winter and returns in spring.
Nonetheless, you risk killing your plant by freezing it to death in the winter, chilling it into dormancy in the summer if your heating breaks down, or placing your plant in a drafty area of the house, you may never regenerate it again, in this casee.
What Are Ways To Prevent Mint From Dying?
Ways to prevent mint from dying would be adding compost to the soil, providing proper sunlight, keeping the area it is located with well-ventilation and sanitized, protect it from pests, and provide it with nutrients. Additionally, you must monitor your plant and prevent it from frostbite, provide mulching and fertilization.
– Add More Compost to The Soil
Mint plants thrive in well-drained soil with an adequate amount of organic content, so that it will regain nutrients through the soil.
Nonetheless, if the soil is too dry or has little organic matter, it will not provide the nutrients the mint plant needs. You must, therefore, enrich the soil with compost or organic matter to improve its properties
Compost, animal manures, green manures, mulches, or peat moss can all be used to enhance the quantity of organic matter in your soil if you add it. Concentrate on the top six inches of soil, since it contains most of the soil life and plant roots.
– Provide Adequate Sunlight
Mint plants do best in low light levels, so keep them away from direct sunlight during the hottest day.
Too much sunlight can also encourage fungal growth and disease in your mint plant. Hence, you must make sure to provide the proper temperature for mint plants by keeping your home within 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
A little sunlight can make your mint plant grow faster, but too much of it can cause its leaves to dry up and eventually die.
What you should do is place your plant in a partially shaded area and keep it there until the afternoon. This way, your mint plant can get the right amount of sunlight it needs to grow. You can place your plant near a window without blocking the sunlight. The sunlight should also fall on the leaves of the mint plant.
– Keep Area Well-ventilated
Mint plants are susceptible to fungus and pests if the air around them is too humid. Keep the area around your mint plant well-ventilated to help prevent condensation and keep pests from building up.
Good air circulation encourages water evaporation and transpiration, avoids condensation on leaf surfaces, slows the spread of fungal diseases and rot, and strengthens their growth.
– Keep Area Well-sanitized
Make sure to clean your mint plant regularly, as dirty environments can lead to fungal growth and disease. In other words, you may consider moving other fungicidal plants away in this plant, so that no type of pest would get transferred, hence, keeping the area very well sanitized is necessary and crucial.
Hence, to adhere to this option, you must at all times use a good, organic fungicide or insecticide on your mint plant every week or two, if necessary. Furthermore, dry your plant’s soil properly after watering it, because you do not wish to see it degenerate from the sanitary aspects.
– Protect From Pests and Fungi
Mint plants are susceptible to several pests, including flea beetles. Be sure to protect yourself from these pests by using an excellent organic insecticide or fungicide on your mint plant every week or two.
Use a pesticide derived from plants, such as pyrethrum or rosemary oil. These effectively kill spider mites while causing no harm to the plant or other species. Garlic water and hydrogen peroxide are two other organic remedies.
Fungicide treatment and cultural methods are used to control mint rust or even death as it becomes prolonged. If the disease is mild, organic growers should eliminate diseased mint plants or remove infected leaves.
To prevent re-infection, all plant residues should be kept away from mint plants, and any tissues exposed to rust should be immediately incinerated or double bagged.
When the beetles first appear on the leaves during their susceptibility stage, insecticides should be used. Malathion and chlorpyrifos-based products are effective at managing flea beetle populations.
– Provide Nutrients
Include organic material in your potting soil. Coir, peat moss, compost, and worm castings are all excellent choices. Applying slow-release granules to the soil’s surface. When you water them, they release nutrients into the soil.
Examine the pH of your soil. Too acidic or alkaline soil can hinder your mint from absorbing essential nutrients. Aim for a moderately acidic, neutral taste around pH 6 to almost 7, go into further depth on pH lower down.
Eventually, the mint leaves normally grow back, even if you cut them hard. Harvesting mint is a low-risk activity; therefore, mint leaves can easily grow back in the ideal environment.
– Monitor your Mint Plant’s Condition Regularly
Monitor the condition of your mint plant regularly, so you can detect any problems early on. If you see any changes, such as wilted or brown leaves, take action to help your plant survive.
The latter is because if your plant is in the recovery mode, you should be very precise in maintaining its health, and not letting it through the same path again.
– Prevent Frostbite
Move your chilly mint to a warmer area of your house to bring it back to life. After a period of acclimatization, it’s completely good to leave your mint in direct sunshine for brief periods. Initially, avoid direct sunlight.
Be cautious about placing it far from vents for the air conditioner and drafts. Your mint should quickly resurrect and begin to produce new foliage.
Mint plants can easily get whittled and start looking like they are dead. However, that’s not the case. This plant can lose their freshness quickly, but you can make them look healthy again with extra care.
In addition, because mint tends to take over, many gardeners store it in a tiny pot and then plant it in the ground or within an enormous container. Basically, if you wish to keep your plant alive till next season, protect the dead mint and re-plant it again.
Note that watering your mint plant early in the morning and late in the day can benefit its revival as well. When the plant is thirsty, it actively pulls water from the soil, but again, don’t over water it, because in this stage it is still gaining its energy back.
– Adequate Fertilization
Too much fertilizer can cause excessive growth and blooms, blocking light from reaching the roots and stunting mint growth. Use a diluted fertilizer every two weeks instead of every week if necessary, because your plant may die due to the lack of proper nutrients, and the source of these nutrients would be the fertilizer.
As you dilute it, it won’t even burn the stems, on the contrary, it will revive the plant and not let it die.
Mint plants like to grow in direct sunlight but need shade during the hottest day. A layer of mulch (like straw or leaves) will help protect your mint plant from direct sunlight while providing nutrients and moisture for growth.
Note that the mulch will keep the soil moist, because this plant enjoys moist soil; otherwise, the leaves can droop owing to dry soil. It is necessary to keep the soil consistently moist by watering to prevent the leaves from wilting.
If your mint plant’s leaves turn yellow or brown and fall off, it could signify that the plant is dying. You can prevent your mint plant from dying by following the abovementioned steps.
Here’s a summary of all the key points that you just read:
- Mint plants can die due to a lack of essential elements like air, water, soil, or fertilizers.
- Ensure that the mint plant is getting enough water and light.
- Make sure that the soil is well-moist and contains all the nutrients required by the mint plant
- Avoid over-watering the plant or giving it too much fertilizer.
- If the mint plant is wilting or doesn’t seem to have much energy, it’s likely a lost cause.
Whether you have a mint plant indoors or outdoors, there are sure to be times when you’re faced with the dilemma of why your mint plant is dying. Following our tips and tricks, you’ll learn what to do when your mint plant is drooping, wilting, browning and looking generally unwell.
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