Last updated Jan 20, 2020 @ 12:39 am
Catnip is a hardy perennial herb of the mint family bearing aromatic leaves attractive to cats. Follow these step-by-step instructions on growing your own and keep your cats happy and enriched!
We have a few things in common, my cats and I. We like laptops, long catnaps on a Caturday morning, and our recreational herb of choice, catnip! Of course, I don’t like catnip for the same reasons the cats do; you won’t find me head shaking and wriggling in ecstasy on the kitchen floor (well, maybe if I’m trying to fish out an old cat toy stuck under the fridge, but that’s no fun). No, instead of catnip parties, I prefer catnip in my nighttime tea blend.
Catnip (Nepeta Cataria) is a staple in our house and is a great form of cat enrichment for any cat. Since we host many nighttime catnip parties for the kitties while sipping on my nighttime tea blend, it made sense to start growing our own. What’s really satisfying is knowing that this catnip came from our garden with zero pesticides or fertilizers. The Chirpies get to enjoy their favorite herb freshly cut during early summer during the growing season or dried throughout the winter months. When the promise of Spring is around the corner it’s always exciting to get a head start with the catnip seeds indoors while waiting for the last frost. In our climate, this could be as late as April or May.
You can grow catnip either by buying a few plants in the herb section of your local nursery or growing it from seed. Below is a step-by-step tutorial on how to grow catnip from seed, along with some tips on care. But firstly let’s explore why catnip is the bee’s knees of all herbs…
- Benefits of catnip for your kitties
- Benefits of catnip for humans
- Growing catnip from seed
- Organic Catnip Herb Seeds (250mg)
- How To Grow Catnip or Catmint
- Nepeta cataria
- Growing the Herb Catnip
- Growing Cultures
- Plant Height
- Plant Spacing
- Preferred pH Range
- Seed Germination Period
- Number of Seeds per Gram
- Soil Requirements
- Alternative Growing Media
- Time From Seed to Saleable Plant
- Sun & Lighting Requirements
- USDA Hardiness
- Water Requirements
- Potential Plant Pests and Diseases
- Special Notes
- Buy Catnip Seeds by Botanical Interests
- Varieties of Catnip
- Growing Conditions for Catnip
- Care of Catnip
- Growing Catnip in Containers
- Garden Pests and Diseases of Catnip
- Videos About Growing Catnip
- Want to Learn More About Growing Catnip?
- Related posts:
Benefits of catnip for your kitties
Our previous post on catnip focused on the use of catnip for environment enrichment and below is a recap:
Catnip can be used to encourage your cat to use his scratching post
Catnip is a mood booster for depressed or grieving cats
It can enhance your interactive play sessions
Can encourage your couch potato to get moving!
Catnip is a fun way to ‘spice’ up treat time without the bad calories of edible treats!
Can be used effectively when introducing cats, the perfect ice-breaker!
Spruce up old tired cat toys by marinating in a tin with catnip
Catnip is non-addictive, so sniff up kitties!
May temporarily improve appetite in sick and older cats
Catnip has zero calories versus edible treats laden with all things bad for kitty. I went through a phase where the cats trained me to give them treats every night and it became a bad habit that I needed to break.
Benefits of catnip for humans
With all these benefits for cats, what’s in it for the humans? Plenty actually. I once found Scout, our tortie cat very attracted to the aroma of my nighttime tea blend. It’s no wonder, catnip is listed as one of the ingredients right next to other well-known calming herbs such as passionflower and chamomile. Yes, catnip has mild sedative properties for humans so it makes sense to be included in a bedtime brew. But Scout’s curious kitty nostrils detected the vapors of nepetalactone, the key compound present in catnip. I’ve since learned how to grow this magical herb so that both the cats and the humans can benefit from its wonderful properties.
Sorry, Scout, catnip tea is not for kitties
The plant has been used in herbal medicine and cooking since medieval times and was a favorite as a remedy for colic in babies, relieving menstrual cramps, relieving stress, anxiety, insomnia, stomach cramps (due to its antispasmodic properties) and many other ailments. It’s also used for meat tenderizing, in cooking as a herb as well as an insect repellent, especially effective against mosquitos. A few freshly crushed leaves rubbed on arms and legs works like a charm on those warm humid summer evenings hanging out with the Chirpies in their catio. There is not enough scientific evidence to prove catnip’s effectiveness in preventing fleas, but it’s worth having catnip in your garden. I have to report that we are lucky not to have had any fleas in the past.
Things you should know about planting catnip
Catnip grows best outside in full sun. If you have to grow it indoors, make sure it receives at least 6 hours of full sun every day Catnip can be grown in containers for inside or balconies but would require more watering Catnip is a hardy herbaceous perennial and comes back more robust every year. Catnip also grows in part shade. In fact, in In hotter climates, it is better to ensure that the plant gets some shade to protect from the harsh afternoon sun. Some people find the odor of catnip to be slightly skunk-like so if you find this to be the case then indoor growing may not be suitable for you. I find coffee to smell skunk-like but I still enjoy drinking it anyway! Don’t be surprised if your neighbor’s cat suddenly decides that your backyard is the coolest place to be. For this reason, you can protect your catnip plants with an arched-shaped piece of wire mesh. This way any enthusiastic rubbing and licking by cats would not damage the plant base. Catnip plants are prolific, spreading easily and in some places it can be seen as a weed. If you don’t want your garden taken over by catnip just be sure to cut the flowers before they go to seed. In addition to this, after planting in pots, bury the whole catnip pot in the garden. This prevents their roots from straying too far and popping up everywhere. Catnip thrives in poor soil and is not really fussy about the substrate it grows in. A less compact, sandy substrate yields a more aromatic harvest of nepetalactone goodness!
What you will need to get started
This post contains affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase when clicking a link I will make a small commission which helps maintain this blog (and the Chirpies’ weekend catnip habit too!) but won’t cost you a cent more! Read my full disclosure.
- You will need a seed starter kit. I used a windowsill “greenhouse” 12 plant starter kit which doesn’t take up a lot of space on a sunny windowsill. You don’t need soil as it contains ready-made sphagnum peat moss pellets in which you will be burying your catnip seeds.
- Catnip seeds available online or at your local garden center.
- Water-filled spray bottle
- Patience and love
Prepare the seeds by stratification
Before planting the catnip seeds, they need to be stratified. This is almost like giving the seeds a ‘shock treatment’ or cold treatment to break the dormancy cycle so that they germinate quicker. This is an optional step but I think it’s worth the effort as catnip seeds are tiny but tough! If you don’t stratify the catnip seeds they could take up to four weeks to germinate!
- Place the seeds in a freezer bag and freeze overnight.
- Soak the seeds the next day. Fill a bowl with hot tap water (not boiling water) and sprinkle the seeds in the water. Leave to soak for 12 to 24 hours.
- Do not soak longer than 48 hours
SIDE NOTE: There is a difference between catnip (Nepeta Cataria) and catmint (Nepeta Faassenii). Both have very similar properties and the terms are often used interchangeably but it’s Nepeta Cataria that gives your cat his kicks!
In one of our Caturday Doodles, we explain more about these two related herbs, catnip and catmint.
Voilà! Now that you have mimicked the ‘abuse’ that the seed would have been through in nature, it’s ready for planting. You have also successfully activated the seed’s ‘internal clock’ advising it that it’s safe to germinate!
And now for the fun part, planting the catnip seeds
1. Fill the bottom tray of your seed starting kit with warm water until the little pellets are covered.
2. Soak the pellets for a few minutes. You should see each pellet rise up and puff out as they become soaked, resembling a sponge.
3. Drain off all the excess water from the tray.
4. Gently tear open the middle part of the netting of each pellet to make way for the seeds.
5. Dig a shallow hole in each pellet, about 3mm or 1/8 inch and drop in 3 to 4 catnip seeds in the hole of the pellet.
6. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of the pellet mixture and then cover with the plastic cover. The mini greenhouse dome retains warmth and moisture which is the ideal setting for germination to occur.
7. Initially store your catnip greenhouse away from sunlight in a warm dark spot in your home. This could be on top of a shelf, on top of the refrigerator or a wall heater. While waiting for the seeds to germinate spray with water and ensure the pellets do not dry out.
8. After 10 -14 days little green seedlings will appear just above the soil. Your catnip seedlings are now ready to bask in full sunshine, ideally on a south facing windowsill. Keep the seedlings moist and prevent them from drying out by misting with water every day.
After 10 to 14 days you will be rewarded with tiny green seedlings. At this stage your catnip sprouts will already bear the familiar catnip scent. Keep out of reach of nearby kitty noses!
9. Be sure to elevate your catnip sprouts out of the way of curiously sniffing feline noses! Once the sprouts start developing their true leaves it already starts giving off a distinctive catnip scent and you don’t want the cats destroying the plant before it has even begun.
10. When all threat of frost is over plant the 4-5 inches high individual catnip plants in their permanent home in the garden or in containers. Plant them about 18-20 inches apart. It may seem like too much space, but these plants grow up to 2 feet wide and 3 feet tall so it’s important to prevent crowding. Water the catnip plants regularly during the first four weeks of growth.
Spread the love for bushier growth
Frequently prune the catnip for bushier growth by pinching off some shoots and leaves. It encourages more growth and lushness and prevents the catnip from becoming too leggy. Oh and this is where the fun begins; your cat will enjoy these pruning sessions too as they get the off-cuts! Everybody wins!
For a bushier catnip yield, frequently pinch off leaves during growth. Your kitties will love this task!
A fun stop – The hanging catnip highway salad bar
Hanging baskets is an attractive and practical solution for containing catnip plants. It’s easily accessible for the cats to nibble, but the swaying motion deters them from attempting to jump into the basket. I love the eco-friendly coco liners of these hanging baskets and we have a few of them hanging in the catio for kitties’ snacking pleasure. We even keep some baskets out in winter as we discovered that freeze dried catnip or ‘catnipsicles’ is darn tasty too according to Jimmy fancy Feet.
Charlie shows his pruning skills as he helps himself to a fresh catnip salad bar Catnip highway kitty jungle pit stop
Sly Pie’s word of caution
Sly Pie doing his best hen impression and demonstrates the wrong way of germinating the seeds. The wrong way of germinating seeds, don’t ‘incubate’ them. In the Spring, Sly Pie enjoys sitting inside some of the catnip baskets that were left out from last winter. New catnip shoots have emerged and he has taken a liking to ‘incubating’ them. I wonder if he thinks they’ll grow quicker. I think the look below says it all! Judging from his smug look, he thinks he played a major roll in the result of his catnip tunnel.
We hope you try your hand at growing this aromatic wonder herb. Your cat will be getting his kicks from his homegrown greens while you relax with your nighttime tea, all from your own garden! Do you grow catnip and have you tried growing it from seed? Please chirp us a line in the comments!
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Growing catnip from seed
When planting catnip seeds, the best results can be achieved through the use of proper seed preparation, adequate spacing between seed rows, and appropriate watering. As the first step, a process of freezing and refreezing catnip seeds will allow them to germinate more easily. Transplanting seedlings several inches apart in a garden bed, then thinning seedlings as necessary after they have produced two sets of leaves will help produce prime growing results. Keeping catnip seeds moist with a mister, rather than overwatering, is one key to success with these plants indoors or outdoors.
To fully prepare catnip seeds for germination, it helps to break down the tough seed coating. One way to achieve this goal is by putting seeds in a plastic baggie in the freezer for one month. Next, let the seeds thaw completely, and then freeze them for one additional month. Finally, let the seeds thaw again overnight by immersing them in warm water.
Nepeta cataria, sometimes known as catmint, can grow up to 4 feet (120 cm) high. The spacing of plants is important for successful growth. Ideally, plant catnip seeds with about 15 inches (38 cm) between rows. Transplant the seedlings outdoors to a sunny bed after the last spring frost, allowing a spacing of about 20 inches (50.8 cm) between plants.
Catmint is a common name for plants from the genus “nepeta,” a group within the “Lamiaceae,” or mint, family. Another common name is catnip. Both names come from the euphoric effect some members of the genus have on cats. This effect is created both by dried and living forms of those plants.
The effect on cats may be compared to inebriation in humans. It is believed to be brought on by the way chemicals from the plant mimic cat pheromones. The effect is inherited genetically, and though all varieties of felines — including lions — may experience it, specific cats may be immune to the effect.
Members of the nepeta genus are herbaceous, meaning their stems are non-woody and die off after the growing season. Catmint is also perennial, meaning that only the parts of the plants above ground die off, and the plants grow back the following season from the underground portions. Catmint is a flowering plant, and the normal blooming season begins in early summer; the plant is capable of blooming repeatedly throughout the season.
Organic Catnip Herb Seeds (250mg)
For single seed packets of Catnip, please visit PatriotSeeds.com to purchase.
Organic Catnip Herb (250mg) Description:
Organic Catnip is a favorite garden crop for cat lovers, but it can also be used in teas for human consumption. Grow organic herbs such as Catnip in your garden using seeds from Patriot Seeds. The seeds are 100% heirloom and Certified Organic by the CCOF and the USDA. They are packaged in re-sealable heavy-duty packages and can be stored for 5+ years so you can grow a fresh Catnip crop for years to come. When you’re ready to declare your food independence, buy Patriot Seeds.
Organic Herb: Catnip Planting Instructions:
Plant seeds indoors 4 to 8 weeks before the last frost. Seeds should be planted 1″ deep in a seed-starting formula. Keep the soil moist and at 70 F. After 2 to 3 weeks, seedlings should emerge. As soon as the seedlings come up, provide plenty of light for up to 16 hours a day. Seedlings do not need much fertilizer, but feed them with a starter solution when they are 3 to 4 weeks old. Before transplanting seedlings in the garden, harden them by moving them to a sheltered place outside for a week and bringing them in at night. Catnip seeds prefer full sun and should be planted 12″ apart. Grow time is about 80 days.
Organic Herb: Catnip Harvesting Instructions:
Leaves or whole stems should be harvested as soon as the plant is mature, before the leaves start to yellow. It is best to harvest the leaves in the morning, between the dew drying and the heat of the day. Cut stems off at the base of the plant. Strip leaves from stems and store in the refrigerator for a few days. The leaves can also be dried for long-term storage.
Did You Know This About Catnip?
Catnip is part of the mint family. Although its claim to fame is driving cats wild, if mixed with tea, catnip can work as a calming agent for humans.
How To Grow Catnip or Catmint
Catnip and Catmint are the common names for Nepeta cataria, a hardy perennial herb of the Mint Family, with pungent fragrance which is highly attractive and exciting to cats.
Catnip grows to a height of three or four feet, and features downy, light green foliage with small lavender flowers that grow on spikes up to five inches long.
Catnips grow well in almost any soil, but does best in a moderately rich loam that is well-draining. It’s aroma increases when grown in sandy soil or via the hydroponic method. It will grow acceptably in either sun or shade.
Catnip is easily propagated by seed, stem cuttings, or rootball division. Seed should be sown in rows late in fall or early in the spring and lightly covered. When sown in the fall, a denser crop is ususally achieved. When plants reach five inches tall, thin so that they stand 12 to 18 inches apart. Catnip can also be started early indoors and transplanted outside after the last chance of frost.
Cats aren’t the only creatures that benefit from Catnip as the leaves may be candied to enjoy as a dessert and it’s oil is used to relieve the symptoms of headaches and nervousness.
Growing the Herb Catnip
Catnip grows best in full sun combined with average, well drained soil. It grows well in hydroponics as well. It is a perennial herb of the mint family that will grow from 3-5 feet tall. Water them regularly. Cut out last years spent stems in early spring, which creates room for new ones. Cutting the plants completely down after the first bloom set will allow enough time for the plant to completely regrow and bloom again.
Outdoors, containers (sow direct in final pots, or in plugs and later transplant to final pots), and hydroponics.
Catnip usually grows to a height of 3 to 4 feet (90 -120cm).
Catnip plants should be spaced between 15 and 18 inches (38 and 45 cm) apart.
Preferred pH Range
Catnip will grow in a relatively wide pH range between 6.1 (mildly acidic) and 7.8 (mildly alkaline).
From seed. Start seeds indoors prior to the last frost.
Seed Germination Period
Catnip seeds will germinate in soil in approximately 7 to 10 days, but can germinate in as few as 5 or 6 days in dedicated propagation media such as Oasis Rootcubes, Rapid Rooters, or Grodan Stonewool.
Number of Seeds per Gram
There are between approximately 1,000 and 1,250 catnip seeds per gram, depending on variety.
Catnip grows fine in well drained, average soils.
Alternative Growing Media
Soilless potting mixes (Pro-Mix, Sunshine Mix, etc.), perlite, vermiculite, rockwool, coco peat, Oasis Rootcubes.
Time From Seed to Saleable Plant
Sow in plugs or seedflats 12 to 15 weeks before sale. Seeds to finished plugs, 8 to 10 weeks; plugs to saleable plants, 3 to 5 weeks.
Sun & Lighting Requirements
Catnip grown outdoors prefers full sun, but will tolerate some shade..
Catnip will grow indoors satisfactorily under standard fluorescent lamps, and exceptionally well under high output T5 fluorescent plant grow lights, compact fluorescent, or high intensity discharge (metal halide or high pressure sodium) plant growing lights.
Keep standard fluorescent lamps between 2 and 4 inches from the tops of the plants, high output and compact fluorescents approximately one foot above the plants, and HID lights between 2 and 4 feet above the plants, depending on wattage.
Have an oscillating fan gently stir seedlings for at least 2 hours per day to stimulate a more compact, and sturdier plant habit.
Perennial. Zones 3a through 9b.
Water regularly, being careful not to overwater. Allow soil to go almost dry between watering, then soak thoroughly.
Potential Plant Pests and Diseases
Catnip can be susceptible to whitefly and spider mites but has minimal disease issues.
Catnip may be considered a noxious weed or invasive plant in some areas. Catnip is known to attract bees, butterflies or birds and has fragrant blossoms. Catnip self-sows freely; remove flowers (deadhead) if you do not want volunteer seedlings the following season.
Buy Catnip Seeds by Botanical Interests
Heirloom Catnip Seeds
Enjoy a cup of hot catnip tea while watching your cats frolic in a patch of this fragrant plant.
Organic Heirloom Catnip Seeds
Along with fresh catnip planted in containers indoors, catnip toys will provide your cats with hours of fun.
Do you want to start growing catnip in your garden this year? Or maybe start catnip for your indoor cats from seed. Learn about when to start growing, how to grow catnip and how to dry the catnip!
- Plant seeds indoors 4-6 weeks before last freeze.
- Catnip requires a lot of sun and water. Take that into consideration when picking a garden bed or a place in your home for your pot.
- Plant your catnip sprouts outside after the last freeze. If you are planting inside, make sure you plants have plenty of room to grow.
- Water your sprouts and watch them grow!
- When you plants have grown, cut trimmings to dry for your kitties. As the summer season comes to a close, take come clippings and transfer to an indoor pot to keep your plants going year round!
*** Expert tip ***
If you are growing full catnip plants indoors and have excited cats, use a large pot. Then plant the plants at least 6 inches below the rim. Put chicken mesh or other wire over the top of the pot so your cats can reach the growth without destroying the base of the plant!
Looking to start growing catnip indoors instead? Check out this great video blog about how to make this plant thrive inside as well!
Known in antiquity as “catswort.” Bees seem to prefer its flowers over most others, but a common plant pest in gardens, the flea beetle, is deterred by it. The universal appeal of this species to cats is underscored by the fact that the herb’s common name in every Western language contains some variation of the word “cat.” Follow along with this handy How to Grow Catnip from seeds guide and give your cats some fun!
Season & Zone
Season: Warm season
Exposure: Full sun
Sow seeds indoors in February and March, and transplant or direct sow in April and May. Can also be direct sown where it is to grow in September. Bottom heat will speed germination. Ideal temperature for germination: 21-27°C (70-80°F). Seeds should sprout in 10-20 days.
Sow on the soil surface or barely covered with perlite. Thin plants or transplant to 30cm (12″) apart. Keep seedlings well protected from cats!
Catnip does very well in containers, raised beds, or borders in full sun to partial shade. The main challenge to growing it is protecting it from cats. After the main bloom, plants should be cut back hard to encourage a second bloom and tidy shape.
To save the summer catmint bounty, harvest when fully grown, and keep the plant picked regularly.
Usual seed life: 5 years.
Attracts pollinators (and cats!), but repels aphids, flea beetles, Japanese beetles, ants, weevils, and squash bugs.
More on Companion Planting.
by Matt Gibson
Ready to grow your own catnip? Catnip is an herb that in the wild is found primarily in North America. It is very easy to grow and is even known to be somewhat invasive, as the plant reseeds even in areas where it is not grown as a perennial. Catnip’s tendency to spread out and claim new territory has earned it a bad reputation among some gardeners—especially those who don’t like how quickly the herbaceous perennial can take over a flower bed or plot of land.
Cat lovers around the world, however, have kept the plant on the shelves at local garden centers and nurseries, as this plant is popular among gardeners who grow it for the benefit of their feline friends. Catnip is an herb of the mint family. The plant’s pungent and intoxicating odor is a treat for a large number of cats. It is not very widely known, though, that catnip only has an effect on about half of the cat population. Some cats just don’t experience any euphoria from the plant. The other half of the cat population, on the other hand, can’t get enough of the herb.
The chemical compound produced by the catnip plant that makes it so much fun for some felines is called nepetalactone, and when consumed as part of catnip, it can affect a certain cat in one of two ways. Once ingested, catnip can work as a sedative on susceptible felines. On the other side of the spectrum, when some responsive cats smell catnip, the herb can make them go wild with energy. Some cats can’t get enough of the plant and will even block other cats from coming near where catnip grows or has been sprinkled. Like all good things, catnip should be enjoyed in moderation, so make sure that you don’t let any of your cats have access to the feline-friendly part of your garden at all times.
It is possible for a cat to ingest more catnip than they should and have an icky reaction, which is why we suggest not allowing your pets unrestrained access to the catnip supply. Cats who get too much catnip in their systems may respond with illness, such as vomiting or diarrhea, but this response is limited to rare cases.
So take things slow with catnip—cut off a sprig or two to give to your cat occasionally, and use this plant to help teach your pets the joys of indulgence balanced with moderation and restraint. And when you do serve your cat its occasional dose of delirium via catnip, don’t forget to break out your phone and record your cat’s reaction to the herb. YouTube viewers need another cute cat video, stat!
Catnip can be grown in patches up to three feet high and wide, and the plant occasionally produces small clusters of white- or lilac-tinted flowers. Gardeners should be aware, however, that catnip is rarely grown for its ornamental value because the flowers are a bit of a rarity from this weed-like herb.
Varieties of Catnip
Catnip (Nepeta Cataria) is commonly referred to as catmint by speakers of British English in the U.K., but for American English speakers in the United States, the name catmint is reserved for catnip’s more ornamental relatives that are friendlier to gardeners, such as Nepeta Faassenii or Nepeta Mussinii. If you are looking to grow catnip in your garden for your feline’s enjoyment, be sure to get Nepeta Cataria and not another variety of Nepeta or a closely related mint plant that’s not quite the real deal.
Growing Conditions for Catnip
Catnip is a drought resistant groun- covering perennial hardy to USDA zones 3 through 9. Catnip plants grow their best when placed in full sun to partial shade. This herb does well in almost any soil type, but catnip thrives in a slightly alkaline, moderately rich loam. It will produce a more fragrant aroma if grown in sandy soil or in a hydroponic system (making it even more attractive to cats). Catnip will thrive in full sun, but it also performs surprisingly well in partial shade, so the main thing to concern yourself with for maintenance is whether the soil where you planted catnip has ample drainage. Catnip is not a fan of standing water. To protect your catnip patch from neighborhood cats, you might have to construct a boundary like a fence or enclosure to keep out any unwelcome strays or visiting felines who may come sniffing around your catnip plants uninvited.
Sow your catnip seeds in rows in the late fall or early spring, and lightly cover them with soil. When sown in the fall, the rows will produce a dense population. If you plant catnip from seeds, you can expect the seedlings to reach germination in seven to 10 days. When the shoots of the seedlings have grown to reach five inches in height, you should thin out the rows so that each plant stands about 12 to 18 inches apart. You can propagate new catnip plants from stem cuttings, with root division, or by seed. Catnip can be started indoors and seedlings transplanted to more permanent places outside after the last chance of frost has passed for the year.
Care of Catnip
Water your catnip plants regularly, but there’s no cause for alarm if you miss watering them here and there. Catnip is a very resilient ground cover herb, and it won’t be slowing down its growth due to a simple hiccup in maintenance like just one or two missed watering sessions. Just make sure that, for the most part, your plants get the water they need on a regular schedule.
Pruning and shaping your catnip plants and other herbs is very important to keep them growing healthy and strong. Cut out last year’s spent stems in the early spring, and cut the plant down completely after the completion of the first blooming cycle. Don’t feel bad for taking this opportunity to trim your catnip plant down to size. It will be back to its full height and producing fresh blooms again when next growing season comes along.
To shape catnip plants like a pro, simply pinch them off where they are growing to promote foliage density and make the plants appear more full, while keeping the overall size of the plant contained. If you don’t want your catnip to decide to expand and grow outward at the first opportunity, be sure to deadhead all its blooms when they start to fade.
Growing Catnip in Containers
Catnip is also a great fit for container gardening. Just be sure to pick a container that is big enough to handle the herb’s quickly expanding root system, and don’t be afraid to replant in a larger planter when your catnip plant becomes too big for its home.
Garden Pests and Diseases of Catnip
Catnip has a tendency to be susceptible to whiteflies and spider mites, but cases of infestation are rare, and there are no other common pest issues or diseases involving catnip.
The main bugs that catnip is known to attract to your garden area are insects that benefit your garden, such as bees and butterflies, which will help to pollinate your plants, as well as predatory insects that will make a meal of any other pests in the vicinity.
Videos About Growing Catnip
Check out this video for a tutorial on how to grow catnip in your home garden, both for the benefit of your own health and the wellbeing of your cats:
Watch this video to learn how to plant and germinate catnip by seed:
This video dives into the science behind catnip, a favorite herb of many cats, and it also answers the question, “What does catnip do to cats?”
Want to Learn More About Growing Catnip?
Banfield Pet Hospital covers Is Catnip Safe for Your Cat
Gardening Know How covers Growing Catnip
Herb Gardening covers Growing Catnip
The Spruce covers How to Grow Catnip Plants