Why Is My Mint Plant Struggling? 9 Causes and Solutions To Revive It

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Video mint plant dying

If you’re wondering why your mint plant is withering away, you’re not alone. Many mint plant owners are surprised to discover that these resilient herbs can be sensitive to various factors that can lead to their demise. Lack of sunlight, improper care, fungal attacks, and more can all contribute to the death of your beloved mint plant. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind your mint plant’s struggle and provide expert solutions to help revive it.

Understanding the Reasons Behind Mint Plant Decline

Your mint plant may be dying due to poor soil conditions, lack of water, excessive sunlight, poor air circulation, and inadequate sanitation. These factors can individually or collectively lead to the decline of your mint plant. Additionally, nutrition deficiency, heat exhaustion, inadequate growing space, and frostbite injuries can all contribute to its demise.

Poor Soil Condition

Mint plants thrive in well-drained soil that contains an adequate amount of organic content. If the soil is too dry or lacks organic matter, it won’t provide the necessary nutrients for your mint plant to thrive. To improve the soil conditions, consider adding compost or other organic matter to enhance its fertility. Overwatering, old soil, and root damage can also impede nutrition absorption, leading to poor growth and eventual death of your mint plant. Furthermore, contaminated soil or soil prone to diseases can harbor pests and fungi that can rapidly multiply and pose a threat to your mint plant’s health.

Lack of Water

Just like any other living organism, water is essential for the survival of your mint plant. Insufficient water can lead to dehydration and ultimately, the death of your plant. It is crucial to ensure that your mint plant receives enough water throughout the day. Deep watering at least once daily can help prevent a dying mint or wilting leaves caused by inadequate hydration.

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While water is essential, excessive watering can be detrimental to your mint plant’s health. Overwatering can lead to root rot, which can eventually kill the plant. Although you may believe that giving your plant plenty of water is caring, you’re, in fact, suffocating it. Like all plants, mint requires oxygen in its roots for healthy growth. Without it, the roots can die and decay. Overwatering also creates a conducive environment for fungal diseases to thrive. Common signs of overwatering include pale and deformed shoots, dusty orange pustules on stems and leaves, and eventually, the loss of leaves as sections of leaf tissue deteriorate.

Excessive Sunlight

Excessive sunlight is another common reason for your mint plant’s decline. While mint plants love sunlight, they thrive best under low light levels, particularly during the early hours of the day. Mint plants require at least 6 hours of light daily to maintain a healthy state. If you’re growing mint in a pot, ensure it is placed in an area that receives sufficient sunlight, such as a patio or porch. However, it’s essential to protect your mint plant from direct sunlight during the hottest parts of the day, as excessive sunlight can lead to fungal growth and disease.

Reasons Why My Mint Plant Is Dying

Poor Air Circulation

Insufficient air circulation can increase the risk of fungal diseases and pest infestations in mint plants. Keeping the area around your mint plant well-ventilated is crucial to prevent condensation and the buildup of pests. Good air circulation facilitates water evaporation, transpiration, and nutrient absorption, while also preventing the spread of fungal diseases and rot.

Poor Sanitation

Maintaining proper sanitation is essential to keep your mint plant healthy and disease-free. Regularly cleaning your mint plant helps prevent fungal growth and disease. Using organic fungicides or insecticides can also aid in pest control. Additionally, ensure that the mint plant’s soil is adequately dried after watering to prevent fungal diseases. Mint rust, a common fungal disease, can cause dusty orange, yellow, and black patches on leaves and shoots, leading to deformation.

Nutrient Deficiency

To thrive, mint plants require a steady supply of essential nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphate. Nutrient deficiency can restrict new growth and make your mint plant vulnerable to various issues. Ensure that your mint plant receives adequate nourishment by adding organic material, such as compost or worm castings, to the potting soil. Additionally, you should monitor the pH level of the soil to ensure it is within the optimal range for mint plants.

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Heat Exhaustion

While mint plants are resistant to cold conditions, they can struggle in excessively hot climates. Overheating can cause your mint plant to become limp and dehydrated. It’s crucial to provide the plant with adequate shade and ensure it is not planted in a dark container that can heat up excessively. Overheated roots can die, leading to the demise of the entire plant.

Inadequate Growing Space

Insufficient growing space can hinder your mint plant’s growth and vitality. When mint plants are crowded, they compete for nutrients and supplies, leading to stress and potential death. To ensure optimal growth, leave at least 18 to 24 inches of space between mint plants.

Frostbite Injuries

Mint plants are generally cold-tolerant, but indoor plants are susceptible to frostbite injuries. Exposing your mint plant to extreme cold can cause it to die. It’s crucial to acclimate your mint plant to colder temperatures gradually and provide adequate protection during freezing conditions.

Ways to Prevent Mint From Dying

Preventing your mint plant from dying involves several key steps. Adding compost to the soil, providing adequate sunlight, ensuring proper air ventilation and sanitation, protecting the plant from pests and fungi, and providing adequate nutrients are essential. Regular monitoring of the plant’s condition and prevention of frostbite injuries are also crucial. Fertilization and mulching can contribute to the plant’s overall health.

Add More Compost to the Soil

To improve soil conditions, add organic matter such as compost or animal manures to enhance the nutrient content. Focus on the top six inches of soil, as this is where most soil life and plant roots are present.

Provide Adequate Sunlight

While mint plants prefer low light levels, they still require sunlight for growth. Place your plant in a partially shaded area and ensure it receives the right amount of sunlight without being overexposed. A window with indirect sunlight can be an ideal location.

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Keep the Area Well-Ventilated

Ensure proper airflow around your mint plant to discourage fungal diseases and pests. Good air circulation prevents condensation, slows the spread of diseases, and strengthens plant growth.

Keep the Area Well-Sanitized

Regularly clean your mint plant and use organic fungicides or insecticides to prevent fungal growth and pests. Dry the plant’s soil properly after watering to avoid fungal diseases.

Protect From Pests and Fungi

Protect your mint plant from pests, such as flea beetles, by using organic insecticides or fungicides. Proper pest control and cultural methods can help manage fungal diseases like rust. Remove diseased mint plants or infected leaves to prevent re-infection.

Provide Nutrients

Ensure your mint plant receives essential nutrients by incorporating organic material into the potting soil, such as coir, peat moss, compost, or worm castings. Check the pH level of the soil to ensure it’s within the suitable range for mint plants.

Monitor Your Mint Plant’s Condition Regularly

Regularly monitor your mint plant’s condition to detect any issues early on. Take action promptly if you notice any changes, such as wilted or brown leaves, to help your plant recover.

Prevent Frostbite

Protect your mint plant from frostbite by moving it to a warmer area when temperatures drop. Gradually acclimate the plant to different temperatures and avoid exposing it to extreme cold.

Adequate Fertilization

Use a diluted fertilizer every two weeks to provide your mint plant with the necessary nutrients. Avoid over-fertilization, as it can hinder growth and cause damage to the plant.


Apply a layer of mulch, such as straw or leaves, around your mint plant to protect it from direct sunlight while providing moisture and nutrients for growth.

Bring Dying Mint Plant Back to Life

In Conclusion

If your mint plant is showing signs of decline, such as yellowing or browning leaves, it’s crucial to take action to prevent further deterioration. By following the tips and solutions provided in this article, you can give your mint plant the best chance of survival. Remember to provide adequate care, monitor the plant’s health, and address any issues promptly to revive your mint plant and enjoy its fresh aroma and flavor.