Catmint Companion Plants

Catmint is known for being incredibly easy to grow and long blooming, with fragrant purple or blue blooms. This spreading perennial is a good choice for gardeners with limited time or interest in high-maintenance plants. Catmint needs full sun, and once this plant is acclimated, it can basically be left alone. This beauty thrives in high heat and sunlight, making it an excellent choice to feature in borders along driveways or sidewalks.

There are many catmint varieties, ranging from 10 inches to 3 feet tall, so choose a cultivar that fits your space. Pair catmint with taller shrubs and perennials like elderberry, speedwell, and russian sage, depending on the available space. Hardy geraniums, petunias, and sweet potato vine are low-growing plants that create a tiered look when planted with catmint.


Shrubs To Plant With Catmint

Elderberry is a tree-like shrub that serves as an excellent background to catmint. The woody branches are covered in medium green foliage and feature white, star-shaped flowers that grow in clusters. The white flowers look lovely with the purple or blue catmint flowers. The elderberry’s blooms later transition into dark purplish-black berries that color-coordinate with catmint.

Perennials To Plant With Catmint

Enjoy flowers all season long with speedwell. This perennial features flower spikes covered in tiny, feathery blooms with dark green basal foliage. Both catmint and speedwell have an upright growth habit, but the structure of the flowers is different, providing a slight contrast to one another. Speedwell can reach several feet tall, as can catmint, so layer these plants according to their height. Russian sage is another aromatic, flowering plant with similar growing requirements to catmint. It has tall stems and airy, purple blooms that add a cohesive yet curated look next to catmint.

Mix things up by planting hardy geraniums with catmint in a border or bed. Plant the taller catmint in the back and let the hardy geranium spread and fill in the front of the bed. 

Annuals To Plant With Catmint

Snapdragons have a similar growth habit as catmint and add height to a planting. The snapdragon’s flowers come in a range of colors, and some cultivars have bi-color blooms, which, along with the lance-shaped foliage, add color and interest. While snapdragons offer a variation on the same theme, plant petunias if you want something completely different. Petunias are low-growing and spread, so they work like a groundcover to fill any gaps between clumping perennials. Petunias benefit from routine pruning, so pinch back the stems to create a bushier look and encourage more flowers.

Best Companion Plants For Catmint in Containers

The easy care and hands-off qualities of catmint make it wonderfully suited to containers. Plant it with other low-maintenance sun lovers like lantana, salvia, and bee balm. All of these plants not only look lovely mixed together, but also attract loads of pollinators. Add spillers like supertunias and sweet potato vines for some depth and drama.


Plants Not To Grow With Catmint

Catmint prefers full sun and warm temperatures and thrives in conditions unsuitable for many plants. Cool-season plants like columbine and hellebore will not grow well alongside catmint. Relegate these plants to a shady corner with moist conditions. Heavy feeders or plants that do best in rich soil and require fertilization, like peonies, roses, and dahlias, are also not a good match for catmint, which grows best in poor-quality soil.

Best Plants To Grow With Catmint

The laid-back care requirements for catmint make it a great plant to feature in challenging areas where high temperatures and drought are common. Plants like salvia, Russian sage, snapdragons, and elderberry are good companions for catmint because they require full sun and can handle low-quality soil and dry conditions.

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Author Alison Cotsonas - Published 10-04-2023