5 Different Varieties of Catnip

Catnip is best known as the "drug of choice" for cats. However, it also has a number of health benefits for humans. There are over 250 varieties. Below are a few of the better known varieties you might consider for your garden.

Common Catnip

This is the variety best loved by cats. The stem and leaves are covered in fine, downy hairs. The heart shaped leaves are gray-green with a scalloped edge. Tall spikes above the leaves are covered in white flowers. The plant will grow up to 3 feet tall.

Camphor Catnip

Camphor catnip smells of camphor rather than the standard, minty smell. It is not popular with cats. The plant looks much the same as common catnip, except the flowers have purple dots in the throat and it only grows to 18 inches tall.

Greek Catnip

This variety of catnip is a pale green, almost white. The flowers are pink. It is smaller than common catnip, only growing to 18 inches.

Lemon Catnip

Lemon catnip looks much the same as common catnip in size and color, though the flowers can have purple spots. It also smells strongly of lemon. This makes it less attractive to cats, but a lovely option for making tea.


Catmint has purple flowers and only grows to 15 inches, but it is otherwise much like common catnip. Its small size and bright flowers make it a great filler in a flower garden.