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Garden Catmint

Nepeta x faassenii

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Lamiaceae (Dead-nettle)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
60 centimetres tall
Fields, gardens, hedgerows, riversides, roadsides, wasteland, waterside.

Blue, 5 petals
Flower spikes of lavender-blue flowers. The 2-lipped flowers measure about 12mm in length. Dark blue anthers. Pollinated by bees.
A 4-parted, oval to oblong nutlet. The seeds ripen in September and October.
Greyish-green, oval, intricately-veined, nettle-like leaves. The toothed leaves are in opposite pairs along the stem. The stems are square in cross section. Perennial. Clump-forming.
The foliage is strongly aromatic and smells of mint.
Other Names:
Catnip, Faassen's Catmint, Faassen's Nepeta.
Frequency (UK):

Other Information


Nepeta x faassenii, also known as Faassen's catmint or Faassen's nepeta, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family. It is a hybrid plant that is created by crossing two species of Nepeta, which are native to Europe and Asia. Nepeta x faassenii is known for its small, blue or violet flowers and hairy leaves. It grows well in well-drained soil and is often found in gardens, borders, and as a ground cover. Nepeta x faassenii is a herbaceous plant that can grow up to 50 cm in height. It is commonly cultivated as an ornamental plant and is valued for its attractive flowers and ability to attract pollinators. The plant is also used in traditional medicine to treat a variety of ailments.


Garden Catmint, Nepeta x faassenii, is a herbaceous perennial plant that belongs to the mint family Lamiaceae. It is native to the eastern Mediterranean region but has been widely cultivated in gardens throughout the world. The plant is popular among gardeners due to its attractive appearance, low maintenance, and its ability to attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies.

Catmint is a low-growing plant that forms mounds of gray-green leaves that are covered in tiny, white, lavender or blue flowers. These blooms appear in early summer and continue throughout the growing season, providing an attractive backdrop for other plants in the garden. The plant reaches a height of 30-60 cm and a spread of 50-60 cm, making it an ideal choice for border plantings, rock gardens, and herb gardens.

One of the best things about catmint is that it is low maintenance and drought tolerant, making it an ideal choice for busy gardeners. Once established, the plant is hardy and does not require regular watering, making it ideal for xeriscaping. The plant also does not require regular fertilization, although it may benefit from occasional applications of compost or other organic matter.

In addition to its attractive appearance, catmint is also a valuable addition to any garden as it attracts pollinators such as bees and butterflies. This makes it an ideal choice for gardeners who want to encourage biodiversity in their gardens. The plant is also fragrant, providing a pleasant aroma in the garden during the summer months.

Despite its hardiness, catmint is susceptible to a few pests and diseases. Aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies can all be a problem, although they can be controlled with regular applications of insecticidal soap or other organic pest control products. Powdery mildew can also be a problem, especially in humid climates. To prevent this, it is important to provide adequate air circulation around the plant and avoid overhead watering.

In conclusion, Garden Catmint, Nepeta x faassenii, is a low-maintenance and attractive plant that provides numerous benefits for gardeners.

Garden Catmint is also a popular herb for culinary use. The leaves of the plant can be used to add flavor to soups, stews, sauces, and teas. The plant is also a popular ingredient in herb blends such as bouquet garni and herbes de Provence. The leaves have a minty flavor with a hint of sweetness, making them a versatile ingredient in the kitchen.

Another benefit of Garden Catmint is that it is deer and rabbit resistant. Gardeners who live in areas where deer and rabbits are a problem will appreciate this feature, as many other plants are vulnerable to browsing by these animals. This makes Garden Catmint an ideal choice for those who want to create a garden that is both beautiful and functional.

In terms of care, Garden Catmint is easy to propagate from cuttings or division. This makes it a good choice for gardeners who want to create more plants to add to their garden. In order to keep the plant healthy, it is important to deadhead the spent blooms regularly and to prune the plant back by about one-third after the first flush of blooms. This will encourage the plant to produce more blooms and keep it looking its best.

Finally, Garden Catmint is an excellent choice for container gardening. The plant's compact size makes it ideal for pots, window boxes, and other containers, and it can be grown in full sun or partial shade. Container-grown plants are also portable, so you can easily move them around your garden to suit your needs.

Garden Catmint is a versatile and attractive plant that offers numerous benefits for gardeners. Whether you want to add flavor to your cooking, attract pollinators to your garden, or simply create an attractive outdoor space, this plant is definitely worth considering. With its low maintenance requirements, attractive appearance, and ability to thrive in a variety of conditions, it is the perfect choice for gardeners of all levels of experience.

Additionally, Garden Catmint is also believed to have some medicinal properties. The plant is said to have a calming effect and has been used to treat conditions such as anxiety, insomnia, and headaches. Some studies have also shown that the plant has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, making it useful for treating skin conditions and wounds. However, it is important to note that the use of catmint for medicinal purposes should be done under the guidance of a healthcare professional.

It's worth mentioning that Garden Catmint is not to be confused with catnip (Nepeta cataria), which is a different species of catmint. While both plants have similar appearance and growth habits, they have different effects on cats. While catnip has a euphoric effect on cats, catmint has little to no effect on them.

When it comes to planting Garden Catmint, it is important to choose a location with well-draining soil and full sun or partial shade. The plant is adaptable to a range of soil types, but it does best in soil that is moist but not waterlogged. Garden Catmint can be planted in the spring or fall and will begin to grow rapidly once established.

In conclusion, Garden Catmint is an attractive, low maintenance, and versatile plant that offers numerous benefits for gardeners. With its attractive appearance, ability to attract pollinators, and potential medicinal properties, it is definitely worth considering for any garden. Whether you're planting it in your garden, using it in your cooking, or incorporating it into your landscaping, this plant is sure to be a valuable addition to your outdoor space.

30 Facts About Garden Catmint

Here are 30 facts about Catmint (Nepeta):

  1. Catmint, or Nepeta, is a perennial herb that belongs to the mint family, Lamiaceae.

  2. It is often referred to as "catnip" because it is known to induce a euphoric reaction in cats.

  3. Catmint is native to Europe and Asia but is now found in various regions around the world.

  4. This herb is known for its fragrant, aromatic leaves that release a pleasant scent when crushed.

  5. Catmint is widely cultivated for its ornamental and medicinal uses.

  6. The most common species, Nepeta cataria, is the one that attracts cats with its scent.

  7. Catmint is drought-tolerant and relatively low-maintenance, making it a popular choice in gardens.

  8. The plant typically reaches a height of 2-3 feet (60-90 cm) and produces clusters of small, tubular, lavender, or white flowers.

  9. Catmint blooms from late spring to early autumn, attracting pollinators like bees and butterflies.

  10. It is also used in herbal medicine, known for its calming and soothing properties.

  11. Catmint leaves can be dried and used to make tea, which is believed to help with anxiety and insomnia.

  12. The essential oil from Catmint is used in aromatherapy for relaxation.

  13. Catmint is often grown as a companion plant to deter pests like aphids and squash bugs.

  14. It's not just a favorite of domestic cats; big cats like lions and tigers also react to catnip.

  15. Catmint has a long history of use in traditional medicine for various ailments.

  16. Some people believe that Catmint can help alleviate menstrual cramps and digestive issues.

  17. The name "Nepeta" is derived from the Etruscan city of Nepete in Italy.

  18. Catmint has square stems, a characteristic of plants in the mint family.

  19. It is deer-resistant, making it a good choice for gardens in areas with deer populations.

  20. Catmint is known to have anti-inflammatory properties.

  21. The leaves and flowers of Catmint are edible and can be used in salads or as a garnish.

  22. It's a great addition to herb gardens and can be used in various culinary dishes.

  23. Catmint can be used to make a natural insect repellent when crushed and applied to the skin.

  24. The plant is often propagated through seeds, cuttings, or division.

  25. Some varieties of Catmint have variegated leaves, adding an ornamental touch to gardens.

  26. Catmint is also known for its ability to survive in poor, rocky, or sandy soils.

  27. It's an excellent choice for xeriscaping and water-wise gardening.

  28. The aroma of Catmint can be quite soothing for humans as well, making it a popular choice for aromatic gardens.

  29. The catnip effect on felines typically lasts for about 10-15 minutes.

  30. In addition to its use in traditional medicine, Catmint has been researched for its potential as a natural insect repellent and for its impact on pollinators in the garden.


Garden Catmint filmed at Lytham St. Anne's in Lancashire on the 12th June 2023.


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