Apple Mint, Woolly Mint

Mentha suaveolens

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Mentha (MEN-thuh) (Info)
Species: suaveolens (swah-vee-OH-lens) (Info)
Synonym:Mentha suaveolens subsp. suaveolens
View this plant in a garden



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:




18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


12-15 in. (30-38 cm)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Where to Grow:

Can be grown as an annual

Suitable for growing in containers


Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:


White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Flowers are fragrant

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Kenai, Alaska

Glendale, Arizona

Gentry, Arkansas

Amesti, California

Corralitos, California

Elkhorn, California

Interlaken, California

Long Beach, California

Merced, California

Pajaro, California

Watsonville, California

Smyrna, Delaware

Fort Mc Coy, Florida

Tallahassee, Florida

Roswell, Georgia

Kurtistown, Hawaii

Mount Hope, Kansas

Brodhead, Kentucky

Ewing, Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky

Boston, Massachusetts

Manton, Michigan

Middleville, Michigan

Morrice, Michigan

Cole Camp, Missouri

Hewitt, New Jersey

Roswell, New Mexico

Deposit, New York

West Kill, New York

Glouster, Ohio

Ephrata, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Westerly, Rhode Island

Knoxville, Tennessee

Austin, Texas(2 reports)

Houston, Texas

Manchaca, Texas

Red Oak, Texas

San Antonio, Texas

West Dummerston, Vermont

Falls Church, Virginia

Great Falls, Virginia

Midlothian, Virginia

Radford, Virginia

Clearlake, Washington

Colville, Washington

Kalama, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 25, 2011, Bianatree from Gentry, AR (Zone 6a) wrote:

I love this mint. I line the back of the house with it so I don't have to weedwack or maintain a bed. I just mow right up to it and over the runners. Smells wonderful and much, much better than the johnson grass that used to reside there. It's a great addition to recipes and I make tea with it regularly. Agree, it is a taller variety, but I am very pleased with it. Absolutely a hardy spreader (invasive), but with how we use it and where, it's fine. Maybe 10 years from now I will change my mind.....


On Jul 21, 2006, gardenbugde from Smyrna, DE (Zone 7a) wrote:

Apple Mint has been a part of my life since I was a child. My Mom has grown it for 50 years, only we didn't know it was Apple Mint until a year ago. My Great Grandmother, Sadie Mae Kaufman grew it in a bed in York County, PA, but she called it "Stomach Balsam", because when steeped, it was the first thing you were allowed to drink after having a sick stomach. The farmers called it "Horse Mint", because it grew in the fields. My Mom dug some from my Great Grandmother's bed and has moved it from state to state over the last 50 years!
If you steep 4 or 5 sprigs with tea bags, it makes the best tasting tea. You can also steep it without tea bags, and sweeten it and it makes a refreshing drink.

I grow mine in a huge plastic tub with drainage holes drilled in the bottom. ... read more


On Apr 28, 2006, MalvaFan from Morrice, MI wrote:

Love the smell of Apple Mint when I mow over it. I am currently growing 4 kinds of mint, apple, chocolate peppermint, spearmint, Eau de Cologne mint. The apple mint is taller than the rest and is as invasive as spearmint.


On Jun 23, 2004, NatureWalker from New York & Terrell, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

I find this mint to be the most attractive one of all. Tall, with large sturdy fragrant leaves (pretty flowers later on) and a flavor of not of apple, but more like a wintergreen smell and taste.

It is very nice for hot/cold tea; it gives _All_ of it's flavor best in the heat of water when you steep it for 5 minutes; (put it in a mug or a heat appropiate measuring cup) and pour boiled water over it.
Where it becomes smoothe textured and then the leaf has no flavor left after steeping because _All_ of the flavor is quickly infused with the water. Brew some, try it; chew it and see what I mean.

This does not happen with other mints that I've tried; there is aways not enough flavor with other mints, and still most of the flavor stays in the leaves with oth... read more


On Jun 17, 2004, CatskillKarma from West Kill, NY wrote:

I tossed some uprooted pieces of this mint on the ground near a spring on a south facing slope four years ago. I did not bother to plant them The area was bare--the previous occupants of the house had used that spot to burn trash. I now have a magnificent growth of mint--some plants up to five feet tall--with lavendar-pink flowers. It smells lovely, looks great from a distance, and is indestructable, but has not advanced into the meadow where native grasses and ferns grow nearby. I am just outside the cold end of the range cited above (really zone 4b), but the apple mint is in full sun and has wet feet, and it seems to be ecstatically happy. However, because of the fuzzy leaves, I do not use it for cooking--only as garnish in drinks.


On Jun 16, 2004, Larabee from Houston, TX wrote:

Traditionally, mints are supposed to have lots of sun, but I have my apple mint in the shade (zone 9a) and keep the soil moist, and it grows so fast I cant keep up with harvesting it. Prune a growing apple mint for lots of bushiness. Beware that these are very invasive and spread with runners, so try potting instead of planting in the ground. Apple mint is one of the largest mints Ive seenmine is more than a foot tall and the leaves are much larger than the small, delicate leaves of other mints. Overall a very rewarding plant.


On Oct 7, 2001, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

This mint has light green leaves that are hairy on the upper surface and downy underneath,with serrated edges. They can grow up to 3 feet high .This is not one of my favorite mints as is gets too tall for my beds. Like other mints it does spread and is not drought tolerant. The blooms are pinkish. I would suggest putting in the back of a bed .The leaves are nice in a big tall glass of ice tea.