How to Pick Mint from Your Garden:  A Guide to Harvest Time

by Backyard Homestead HQ

Herbs and Spices

Harvesting mint plants can be as simple or as complicated as you'd like to make it.

The general principles are the same: pick or cut off the leaves you need - as long as you leave at least an inch of the plant, they will continue to grow just fine.


Tips on when to harvest for the best flavor.

Young leaves have a more vibrant flavor.


Mint leaves taste better if the plant hasn't flowered yet.


It's best to harvest when the plant gets 14 or so hrs of daylight each day.


Here are a few options to keep Mints fresh for days:

Pink Blob
Green Blob
Green Blob
Pink Blob

Wrap the sprigs in a damp paper towel.

Put the paper towel inside of a plastic bag, seal it.

Trim the stem's ends, put them into a small glass of water.

Cover with a plastic bag to prevent cross-contamination.

Here's How to Dry Fresh Mint

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Pat it dry after rinsing

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Separate the bunches into small groups

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Tie the stems with clean twine or string

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Hang the stems upside down in a cool, dry, dark area

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Give the mint between 1-2 weeks to dry

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Store in an airtight container

Rinse and clean your mint.

Get out your tray.

Lay the mint sprigs out separately.

Preheat your device.

Check mint and herbs regularly.

Here's how to dry your mint using the dehydrator or oven:

Store your dried mint!

Stack layers between food-grade, plastic grids.

Thick Brush Stroke

freeze-drying mint TIPS


Crush pre-freeze leaves to make mint flakes.

Run the leaves in a food processor & freeze-dry to make mint leaf powder.

Leaving the stem is a personal choice.

Freeze dryer tray can load up to 3 layers.

How Does Harvesting Mint Leaves Promote Growth?

The general rule of thumb for plants is this: they can either focus on growing or they can focus on seeding. Cutting them back will help them focus on growing - and should delay them going to seed.