Bluestem Nurseryhardy field grown plants

Blog     About Us    Contact Us
Ornamental grasses at Bluestem Nursery


Pycnanthemum muticum

Pycnanthemum muticum - Big Leaf Mountain Mint
Pycnanthemum muticum
Big Leaf Mountain Mint
Two images courtesy Naomi Brooks, Verdant Landscapes


Pycnanthemum muticum - Big Leaf Mountain Mint

One of our eastern natives, mountain mint will also grow well in the drier parts of the country when provided with extra water and some shade.

Like many other mints, mountain mint is a spreader, however I wouldn't call it invasive. When used in a border, you will want to cut away the outer third around the plant to give it some space to spread each spring.

For years, P. muticum has been a favourite of mine. Every year it blooms very well, producing a large display of white disc-like flowers on 3-5' stalks. A unique feature is the bracts which, when fully open, are also a pretty silver colour.

The flowers and leaves are aromatic, but it is not considered to be a culinary mint.

Ideal conditions: moist meadows; woodland edge (where it receives part shade or dappled shade)

Ideas and companions:

  • most effective when planted in mass where the bracts appear to be dusted with snow in mid summer
  • at the woodland edge with Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Overdam' where the white in both plants is most noticeable

Flowers: 100 cm (40") in height; blooms are in small clusters and slightly pink in colour; whitish bracts are also decorative; blooms July through September; bees love them

Coldest zone: 4 (find your zone; further info on plant hardiness)

Season of interest: mid summer through fall

Notes: slow spreader in hot dry climates even with adequate moisture; butterflies love it

Pronunciation: Pycnanthemum (pick-NAN-the-mum) muticum (MOO-ti-cum)