Flower description / bloom time
Calamintha has masses of dainty white flowers that change to soft blue as they age. The tiny blooms dance airily just above the foliage continuously from June through October!
Foliage interest / color and texture
Calamintha is a fine-textured plant with rich, shiny green foliage. A member of the mint family, the leaves have a peppermint fragrance when crushed.
Habit and growth rate observations
This upright plant is approximately 12 to 18 inches tall and wide. It forms a clump and is not spreading or aggressive.
Site preference—soil / light
Calamintha grows in full sun with ordinary soils and requires little care. Be careful not to cover the crown of the plant when planting. Heavy mulch and over-irrigating is not necessary and can, in fact, be detrimental. Less tender, loving care is better for calamint.
Successes and possible drawbacks—how to overcome them
Be sure to get the subspecies since the straight species Calamintha nepeta will reseed and has dull gray-green leaves. The more desirable Calamintha nepeta ssp. nepeta has small glossy leaves and is sterile.
Notes from growers / retailers
The true plant is supposed to be sterile or semi sterile. From cuttings, it takes three months to have ready for sale. Two and one-half inch plugs finish in 5 to 6 weeks, bloom in late July. Calamint makes a great plant for August sales and over winters easily under micro foam and white plastic.
The Evaluation Team rated this plant Fair in most categories but recommended its use overall as a long blooming perennial to use as a filler among ornamental grasses, roses or perennials.
Parting SHOT —the overall evaluation results were Fair **
While not overly impressive by itself, it really shines as a filler plant or a plant to weave in and around plants, especially in the rock garden.