Submitted to: Washington Mint Drops
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/1/2007
Publication Date: 4/1/2007
Citation: Boydston, R.A. 2007. Integrated Weed Management in Mint. Washington Mint Drops. Pg 1, Spring 2007.
Technical Abstract: Weeds lower mint oil quality and quantity and should be managed to maximize profits. Integrated weed management includes the use of cultural practices and other methods, such as herbicides. Planting healthy mint rhizomes free of weeds, insects, nematodes, and plant pathogens, and maintaining a healthy crop are the cornerstones of managing weeds in mint. Maintaining a healthy mint stand involves controlling other pests (nematodes, insects, and diseases), maintaining proper fertility and maintaining adequate soil moisture. Preemergence herbicides should be applied at least several weeks prior to the breaking of mint dormancy to avoid herbicide injury and stunting of new mint growth in the spring. Paraquat should be included with preemergence herbicides to help kill any existing weeds. Several effective postemergence herbicides are available for grass control. Grass weeds should be actively growing and not water stressed when applying these herbicides for maximum herbicide uptake and control. Postemergence broadleaf weed control in mint is more difficult and herbicides labeled for this use work best on small weeds less than 2 inches tall. Bromoxynil can cause injury to mint if applied when temperatures are warmer, whereas bentazon requires warmer temperatures for maximum weed control. Tank mixing terbacil with other postemergence broadleaf herbicides can provide extended weed control due to its residual activity. Clopyralid controls several composite species selectively in mint but must be utilized only where spent mint hay is not spread onto sensitive crops.