Pycnanthemum muticum - Big
Leaf Mountain Mint
One of our eastern natives, mountain mint will also
grow well in the drier parts of the country when provided
with extra water and some shade.
Like many other mints, mountain mint is a spreader,
however I wouldn't call it invasive. When used in
a border, you will want to cut away the outer third
around the plant to give it some space to spread each
For years, P. muticum has been a favourite of mine.
Every year it blooms very well, producing a large
display of white disc-like flowers on 3-5' stalks.
A unique feature is the bracts which, when fully open,
are also a pretty silver colour.
The flowers and leaves are aromatic, but it is not
considered to be a culinary mint.
Ideal conditions: moist meadows;
woodland edge (where it receives part shade or dappled
Ideas and companions:
- most effective when planted in mass
where the bracts appear to be dusted with snow in
- at the woodland edge with Calamagrostis
x acutiflora 'Overdam' where the white in both
plants is most noticeable
Flowers: 100 cm (40") in height;
blooms are in small clusters and slightly pink in
colour; whitish bracts are also decorative; blooms
July through September; bees love them
Coldest zone: 4 (find
your zone; further info on plant hardiness)
Season of interest: mid summer through
Notes: slow spreader in hot dry climates
even with adequate moisture; butterflies love it
Pronunciation: Pycnanthemum (pick-NAN-the-mum)