Bubblegum Mint Plant
The bubblegum mint plant, also called hummingbird mint or wild hyssop, has the scientific name Agastache cana. The plant is low maintenance and can be considered invasive when not pruned and divided on a regular basis. Bubblegum mint grows well when planted in rock gardens or in flower beds as a border plant.
Bubblegum mint plants are semi-woody perennials that grow upright to 3 feet. The plant has many branches with gray-green colored foliage that has the scent of licorice. Tall flower spikes form in late summer and blossom through September with one inch long pink flowers. The plant forms in clumps and is an aggressive grower.
The bubblegum mint plant grows best in a location that has a well-draining soil and full sunlight. The plant tolerates most soil types including soil with a low nutrient value. This variety of mint is hardy to plant in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 6 and higher where the winters are not severe.
Bubblegum mint plants are considered drought tolerant, but will perform better when given supplemental water in the hot summer months or during periods of drought. Supply irrigation that soaks the soil to a depth of 10 inches once it becomes dry to a depth of 2 to 3 inches. Fertilize bubblegum mint plants with a balanced perennial flower fertilizer each month during the growing season. Provide winter protection by cutting the stems to a height of 2 to 3 inches and placing 3 to 4 inches of mulch over the root ball. You can prune bubblegum mint plants when needed and divide them every two to three years to prevent the plant from becoming invasive.
Bubblegum mint plants can be propagated if you collect seed pods when they form after flowering is complete. Dry the seeds and store them in a paper envelope. Plant the seeds in early spring by sowing them in 2-inch growing containers filled with moistened seed starting soil. The plants can also be divided in summer by digging the entire plant and root ball and carefully dividing the clump to include roots and green stems. Plant the divided clumps immediately and water them well to stimulate root production.
Monitor bubblegum mint plants for the presence of powdery mildew or rust infections. Powdery mildew appears as white powder on the leaves and stems and causes the leaves to curl. Spray the plant with a fungicide to control the infection. Rust is a fungal infection that creates brown or orange colored spots on the foliage. Infected branches must be removed and destroyed to prevent the spores from spreading.