Harvesting mint correctly and making it durable - this is how it works

Harvesting mint correctly and making it durable - this is how it works

Choose the timing wisely - that is what matters

The choice of the harvest date has a significant impact on the quality of your mint. If you pick the leaves in the weeks of May, you will miss the inimitable aroma later. When made into tea, peppermint, for example, does not come close to developing the desired taste. Premium quality mint will be the right time to harvest:

  • the first bloom is imminent
  • it has not rained in the past few days
  • the morning dew has evaporated
  • the weather is overcast or the sun is not yet at its zenith

also read

  • Preserving mint - the best methods
  • Cut mint correctly - this keeps the growth under control
  • Growing mint successfully - this is how it works in pots and beds

The essential oil content is at its highest when the buds are soon opening. As soon as the mint flowers, the leaves take on a bitter taste. If the plant has been exposed to pattering rain, it is contaminated with crumbs of earth. The valuable ingredients evaporate under blazing sunshine, which has a negative effect on the quality.

Skilled harvesting technology makes the difference

When the chosen day for the harvest has come, experienced gardeners don't just start picking. This approach has two disadvantages. Constant bending over stresses the back unnecessarily. If you only pull too hard once when picking, you will have the entire shoot with roots in your hand. The correct way to harvest:

  • Cut off entire stems with sharp, disinfected scissors
  • at least 1 pair of leaves remains on the plant so that it can sprout again
  • Picking individual leaves puts unnecessary stress on the remaining shoot
  • Do not mix different types of mint, but always harvest one variety

Ideally, collect the mint stalks in a wicker basket. This not only looks appetizing, but also prevents harmful condensation.

In this way, the excess harvest is perfectly preserved

If you harvest mint properly, the fresh shoots will pile up just before flowering. What you don't eat right away can be preserved using the following simple methods:

  • Combine the sprigs of mint into small bundles
  • Tie with bast tape and dry upside down in the attic
  • Wash whole shoots, place on a plate and freeze in the freezer
  • Transfer to bags or cans and freeze


Freeze the mint in portions. To do this, the washed leaves are cut up and placed in the compartments of an ice cube tray. When filled with water, they turn into mint cubes in the freezer for the preparation of food and drinks.

Tips & Tricks

Full sun and mint do not form a dream team. It already begins with the choice of the location, which is ideally partially shaded. Even if you harvest the herb plant correctly, the sun will put a spell on your aroma bill. If you dry the leaves under the warm midday sun, the refreshing taste will evaporate shortly before the end of the day.