Catnip is a perennial herb, belonging to the mint family. Many people have a hard time understanding how catnip is used. For one, catnip gives cats great pleasure. Put a bowl or a sprig of catnip in front of a kitten or a full-grown cat and sit back and watch the cat enjoy playing around the catnip for hours on end.
If you are a cat-lover, catnip is a must in your perennial garden landscape. Second, catnip can be found in many different teas and coffees as a flavor enhancer. Catnip brings out a lemon and minty flavor in many teas. It is also known to help ease the symptoms of a common cold. Below you will find a list of mistakes you must avoid when growing your catnip.
1. Forgetting to Thin Your Catnip
With pretty blue-purplish flowers catnip is a great garden perennial for your garden. However, it also can take over your herb garden. Do not plant your catnip too close to your other herbs. Give it plenty of space for future expansion by planting it in a wide and open space. Every week during prime growing season, take a pair of scissors and trim down your catnip. Pull any leading strands or thin some of the stems.
2. Planting in Shade
Avoid planting your catnip in an area that is shaded. Avoid both partial shade and fully shaded locations around your garden. To grow catnip and enjoy it to its fullest, you must plant in a very nice sunny location.
3. Plant Catnip in a Safe Location
Since cats are incredibly drawn to catnip, make sure you plant the catnip in a location that neighboring cats cannot get into immediately. Some cats just spend their time enjoying the catnip while other cats can be very aggressive and will destroy the catnip before it has a chance to get large enough to survive and thrive on its own.
If the location of your catnip is exposed or may be exposed to neighboring cats, add a little chicken wire or garden wire around your catnip plant until it has grown enough to fend off the aggressive and friendly cats in the neighborhood.
4. Planting Before the Last Frost
If this is your first time planting catnip, make sure you plant it outdoors after the last frost has occurred. It is very easy to start your catnip plant indoors from small seedlings, and it will grow well in warm indoor locations before you decide to transplant it outside. Just make sure you transplant it when it is warm enough during the night for the catnip to survive.
Do not overwater your catnip. The soil should always be moist to the touch. If unsure, test the soil with a moisture meter. Catnip does very well in dry heat and in drought conditions. Do not be alarmed if you forget to water your catnip.