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Apple Mint

Mentha x villosa

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Lamiaceae (Dead-nettle)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
50 centimetres tall
Ditches, gardens, roadsides, wasteland.

Pink, 4 petals
Pale pinkish-purple flowers which appear in compact flower spikes at the top of the plant. Insect pollinated.
A capsule which produces 1 to 4 seeds.
The roundish, hairy leaves are dark green and crinkled. The stems are hairy. Perennial. Apple Mint is a hybrid between Round-leaved Mint (Mentha suaveolens) and Spearmint (Mentha spicata).
Smells minty.
Other Names:
Bowles' Mint, Cuban Mint, Hairy Mint, Mojito Mint, Wild Mint.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Mentha x villosa, also known as "hairy mint" or "wild mint," is a hybrid mint plant that is a cross between Mentha arvensis and Mentha aquatica. It is widely distributed throughout Europe and North America. This mint is commonly used in culinary and medicinal applications. It has a unique aroma and is known for its hairy leaves. It is a hardy, fast-growing plant that can be grown as a perennial in USDA hardiness zones 5-9. It can be propagated by stem cuttings or division of the roots.


Apple mint, also known as Mentha x villosa, is a type of mint that is native to parts of Europe and Asia. This aromatic herb is prized for its sweet, fruity flavor and its many health benefits. In this blog post, we will explore the history, characteristics, and uses of this delightful herb.

History and Characteristics

The apple mint plant is a hybrid of two different types of mint: water mint (Mentha aquatica) and spearmint (Mentha spicata). The plant is a member of the Lamiaceae family and is characterized by its square stem, green leaves, and small, pink or white flowers. Apple mint is a perennial herb that can grow up to three feet tall and is commonly found in gardens and meadows.

The leaves of the apple mint plant are oval-shaped and slightly hairy, giving them a velvety texture. They are a bright green color with a slightly wrinkled appearance. The plant gets its name from its sweet, fruity aroma, which is reminiscent of apples. The flavor of the leaves is also sweet and fruity, with a mild minty undertone.


Apple mint is a versatile herb that can be used in a variety of ways. Its sweet flavor makes it a popular ingredient in many desserts, including cakes, cookies, and ice cream. The leaves can also be used to flavor drinks, such as tea, lemonade, and cocktails.

In addition to its culinary uses, apple mint is also known for its medicinal properties. The herb contains a number of beneficial compounds, including antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents. It has been used to treat a variety of health conditions, including digestive issues, headaches, and respiratory problems.

One of the most popular uses for apple mint is as a natural insect repellent. The plant contains compounds that are toxic to many types of insects, including mosquitoes, flies, and ants. Simply planting apple mint in your garden or rubbing the leaves on your skin can help keep insects at bay.

Growing Apple Mint

If you're interested in growing apple mint in your garden, you'll be pleased to know that it is a relatively easy plant to cultivate. The plant prefers a sunny location with well-drained soil. It can be grown from seeds or propagated from cuttings. Once established, apple mint requires regular watering and pruning to keep it healthy and productive.

In conclusion, apple mint is a delicious and aromatic herb that has a long history of culinary and medicinal use. Whether you're looking to add some flavor to your cooking or keep insects at bay, this versatile plant is sure to please. So why not try growing some apple mint in your garden today and enjoy the many benefits that this wonderful herb has to offer!

Facts concerning Apple Mint

There are many interesting facts and additional information about apple mint that are worth exploring. Here are a few:

  • The apple mint plant is sometimes referred to as woolly mint or hairy mint, due to the slight fuzziness of its leaves.

  • Apple mint is believed to have originated in the Middle East, but it has been cultivated in Europe and Asia for centuries.

  • In addition to its culinary and medicinal uses, apple mint has been used in aromatherapy to promote relaxation and relieve stress.

  • Apple mint is a popular ingredient in traditional Moroccan tea, which is made with green tea, mint leaves, and sugar.

  • Like other types of mint, apple mint can be invasive if not properly contained. It is recommended that you plant it in a container or use a barrier to prevent it from spreading.

  • The essential oil of apple mint is sometimes used in perfumes and cosmetics, due to its sweet, fruity aroma.

  • Apple mint is often used in combination with other herbs, such as lemon balm, chamomile, and lavender, to create relaxing and soothing herbal teas.

Overall, apple mint is a delightful herb that offers a range of culinary, medicinal, and aromatic benefits. Whether you're using it to add flavor to your cooking or to promote relaxation and well-being, this versatile plant is a great addition to any garden or kitchen.

More Facts

Here's some more information about apple mint:

  • Apple mint is a popular herb in traditional Persian cuisine, where it is used in stews, soups, and salads.

  • The leaves of the apple mint plant can be dried and stored for later use. To dry the leaves, simply tie them in small bundles and hang them upside down in a warm, dry place.

  • Apple mint can be used to make a refreshing and healthy infused water. Simply add a handful of fresh mint leaves to a pitcher of water and let it sit in the refrigerator for a few hours to infuse.

  • In addition to its insect-repelling properties, apple mint has been used in folk medicine to treat skin conditions, such as eczema and acne.

  • Apple mint is a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, calcium, and magnesium.

  • The essential oil of apple mint is sometimes used in aromatherapy to relieve nausea and digestive issues.

  • Apple mint is a hardy plant that can tolerate a range of growing conditions. It can be grown indoors or outdoors and is relatively easy to care for.

  • In some cultures, apple mint is believed to have aphrodisiac properties and is used to promote love and romance.

Overall, apple mint is a versatile and delicious herb that has a range of uses and benefits. Whether you're using it to flavor your cooking, promote relaxation and well-being, or repel insects, this fragrant plant is a great addition to any home or garden.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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