Remove mint from lawn

Asked October 11, 2018, 6:10 AM EDT

Hi there. How do I safely eradicate mint from my lawn? It’s completely taken over. Is there a preferable time of year to manually remove to avoid spreading its seed? Rhizomes? I’d like to avoid Roundup and other like chemicals.

Marion County Oregon

1 Response

Thank you for using Ask an Expert for help with your mint invasion. Mint is certainly a tough adversary—spreading by both rhizomes and seed.

A sharpened hoe will cut the tops of the plant off. In addition, there are a number of non-Roundup products available-- citric acid, high-strength vinegar (acetic acid), citrus oil, clove oil and other botanical oils, iron compounds, and so forth. These can be considered to be natural or organic, but do read and follow all label precautions and directions.

Regardless of the method you choose (pulling, hoeing, or spraying), it is persistence that will win the day. Whenever the plants can absorb sunlight, they are building their root reserves and spreading underground. Whenever they form flowers, seeds will surely follow.

So, keep at it. Don’t let the mint get the chance to build up and spread. Your patience and consistency will weaken the patch over time.

A strong, actively growing lawn is a good competitor. With this in mind, keeping that lawn in top shape with feeding, mowing, and watering is a priority. The iron-compound weed control products will attack the mint without killing the grass. Again, persistence in using the products will be key.

Good luck and happy fall,