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Posted by on Jul 26, 2011 in Catnip, Companion Planting, Herbs |

Catnip

Name:
*Catnip (Nepeta cataria)

Description:
*short-lived perennial
*best for zones 4-8
*makes a great garden edging plant
*you can easily make cat toys with catnip and some fabric

Parts Used:
*leaves and flowers

Position:
*well-drained soil
*full sun to light shade

Propagation:
*grow catnip from seed
*it is best started in seed trays, it germinates between 68-86 degrees Fahrenheit
*you can also propagate by tip cuttings and root division in early spring

Maintenance:
*to protect from cats, cover with a wire netting, especially in early spring
*the plants grow quickly in the summer into large bushes that should be staked
*water regularly
*cut back in the fall

Harvesting:
*once the bush is well grown, harvest at any time after the morning dew has dried
*take small bunches of stems, tie with string and hang upside down in a well-aired place. When completely dry, strip off leaves and store in airtight container.

Medicinal:
*this is a great remedy for children and is safe for them
*it reduces fevers, alleviates colic, it is a mild sedative, helps with teething, improves irritability, helps with colds/flus, great for digestive bloating, good for nausea and cramps, helps with stress
*it contains vitamin C
*you can mash the leaves and flowers for a poultice for external bruises
*soothes headaches and scalp irritations

Companion planting:
*this plant attracts bees
*if you plant it next to vegetables, it helps deter flea beetles
*the same chemicals in the plants that makes cats attracted to it also repels insects, especially mosquitoes, and also deters cockroaches

 

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By Cris Daining

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