How to Kill Mint Plants


Mint is the common name given to a wide variety of groundcover plants and small shrubs that are known for their aromatic leaves. Though often desirable, mint can sometimes be invasive and may start to encroach on the growing areas of other garden plants and vegetables. Mint plants are relatively easy to eradicate using a variety of manual and chemical control methods.

Step 1

Remove the mint plants manually using your hand or a garden tool like a spade. This is best for small mint plants, especially the type that form a groundcover, but may be more difficult with shrub-like mint plants, such as Austrian mint.

Step 2

Solarize low-lying mint plants, like the spearmint variety. Cover the mint plants with a sheet of plastic, weighed down at the edges with bricks or rocks. The heat from the sun will bake the plants and kill them over the course of four to six weeks.

Step 3

Use pruning shears or a saw and cut down the mint plant if it's a shrub-like variety. Paint the remaining stump with a standard stump killer herbicide, available from nurseries and garden stores. This kills the mint plant's root network and prevents the stump from creating new shoots.

Step 4

Spray the mint plants with a glyphosate-based herbicide. Glyphosate is systemic and kills all vegetation. Apply according to the herbicide's label, as toxicity varies by product. The mint will die within 14 days.

Tips and Warnings

  • Wear gloves when handling any type of herbicide.

Things You'll Need

  • Spade
  • Plastic sheet
  • Stump killer
  • Glyphosate-based herbicide
  • Gloves


  • "The Herb Gardener: A Guide to All Seasons"; Susan McClure; 1997
  • "Burpee: The Complete Vegetable & Herb Gardener"; Karan Cutler, et al.; 1997
Keywords: kill mint plants, remove mint plants, erradicate mint

About this Author

Josh Duvauchelle is an editor and journalist with more than 10 years' experience. His work has appeared in various magazines, including "Honolulu Magazine," which has more paid subscribers than any other magazine in Hawaii. He graduated with honors from Trinity Western University, holding a Bachelor of Arts in professional communications, and earned a certificate in applied leadership and public affairs from the Laurentian Leadership Centre.