Introducing...

Nepeta

Common name: Catmint

These dependable perennials produce a profusion of usually lavender-blue flowers over a long season from late-spring to late-summer. The tough plants are easy to grow and low maintenance, use them in borders with other perennials or as an informal edging as an alternative to lavender. Trim after flowering to neaten and encourage further flower production. 

Looks

Lavender-blue flowers (sometimes white or yellow) are produced in narrow spikes among soft greyish-green leaves throughout summer. The floppy stems of these upright plants splay outwards, which can be useful for softening edges of beds and borders. 

Likes

Catmints will grow in any soil that drains easily, ideally in full sun, although Nepeta subsessilus will tolerate light shade. Most catmints thrive in dry soil, but Nepeta subsessilus, Nepeta kubanica and Nepeta nuda do better on moister soil.

Dislikes

Permanently wet soils can cause plants to rot off and die. Plants struggle in deep shade.

Did you know?

The appeal of these plants to cats is well known, and some cat toys are stuffed with dried leaves. While many cats can flatten plants in their excitement, some are more disdainful or just have a little chew.

Growing guide

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.