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Gardener warns against common planting mistake that can jeopardize the health of your yard: '[I] found out the hard way'

"Thank you for this."

Mint plant running wild in yard

Photo Credit: @wyseguide / Instagram

What's more refreshing than some fresh mint leaves in your tea, lemonade, or poolside drink? One Instagrammer recently shared how to keep the delicious-but-tenacious herb from taking over your garden while still producing plenty of leaves. 

The scoop

Kaleb Wyse (@wyseguide) recently took to Instagram to show off some clever tricks to keep mint plants thriving throughout the summer. 

In the video, Wyse explains that you should probably keep your mint in a planting container. 

Why? Because mint will spread, effectively taking over your garden and just about everything in it. To avoid this, use a container to plant it in so it can spread all it wants without harming plants and even grass around it. 

Now that you have that under control, Wyse gives some pretty great advice on keeping it producing all year long: trim its flowers early and often.

"The moment [your mint plant] flowers, it won't produce near as many leaves," Wyse explains. "So make sure to keep nipping it back, take those leaves indoors, make your iced teas, your hot teas — whatever you want but don't let this just flower right away or its not going to produce all these leaves." 

It truly is as simple as it sounds. When your herb looks like it's getting close to flowering, simply pull off a section of the top, harvest the leaves, and you're good to go! Your plant will continue growing like usual. 

"That's the wonderful thing about mint — it's the gift that keeps on giving!" Wyse says.

How it's helping

Growing your own herbs at home can save you a pretty penny. Mint, like other herbs, is usually available in small amounts for a fairly hefty price

But many of the herbs you would normally keep in the spice drawer can be grown at home and harvested all summer (or even all year) long. 

But growing at home doesn't just help your wallet. It also helps eliminate food waste and cut back on packaging! Around 119 billion pounds of food is thrown away each year in the U.S. — and 42 billion pounds of that is thrown out in homes. 

When you have a plant you can pick from, you take only what you need. 

What everyone's saying

Many commenters wished they had found Wyse's video sooner, lamenting over how mint and other herbs had taken over their garden. 

"Found out the hard way that the red basil flowered and spread everywhere," one user wrote. 

"Thank you for this! I did not know this about mint … mine is crazy all over the place !!! 🍃" another added.

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