In a Nutshell:
* Nepeta cataria (also known as catnip , catswort , or catmint ) is a plant in the Lamiaceae family.
* This is the common European catmint and a spreading plant. Cats relish the intoxicating leaves and the tea is a popular night cap. This type of mint has a square stem with flowers that are 1/4 to 1/2 inch long and white with purple/violet to pink spots. The 2 to 3 inch leaves are ovate to cordate, opposite, and coarsely toothed, they are covered with soft, white fuzz. The leaf tops are gray-green and the bottoms are white with hairs.
* A mint-like flavour, they make an aromatic flavouring in salads. Older leaves areused as a flavouring in cooked foods. They can be used fresh or dried to make an aromatic herb tea. The tea shouldbe infused in a closed container in order to preserve the essential oils, boiling is said to spoil it.
* The common name catmint can also refer to the genus as a whole. The names catnip and catmint are derived from the intense attraction most cats have towards them.
* The plant is drought-tolerant and deer-resistant. It can be a repellent for certain insects, including aphids and squash bugs. Catnip is best grown in full sunlight and grows as a loosely branching, low perennial more...
* With domestic cats, N. cataria is used as a recreational substance for pet cats' enjoyment, and catnip and catnip-laced products designed for use with domesticated cats are available to consumers. Common behaviors cats display when they sense the bruised leaves or stems of catnip are rubbing on the plant, rolling on the ground, pawing at it, licking it, and chewing it. Consuming much of the plant is followed by drooling, sleepiness, anxiety, leaping about and purring. more...
* Edible Parts: Leaves.
Edible Uses: Condiment, Tea.
Young leaves - raw, have a mint-like flavour, they make an aromatic flavouring in salads. Older leaves are used as a flavouring in cooked foods. They can be used fresh or dried to make an aromatic herb tea. The tea should be infused in a closed container in order to preserve the essential oils, boiling is said to spoil it. more...