Catmint Nepeta 'Leeds Castle'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
catmint 'Leeds Castle'


Nepeta 'Leeds Castle', commonly known as catmint, is characterized by its soft, gray-green foliage which is both delicate and dense, forming a lush mound. The leaves are small, heart-shaped to oval, and often have a slightly scalloped edge, giving them a soft, inviting texture. During the blooming season, which typically happens in late spring to early summer and may extend to early fall, the plant becomes adorned with spiky inflorescences. These spikes boast a profusion of small, tubular flowers that are often a soft lavender to violet in color, adding a gentle splash of color to the garden. The blooms are not only visually appealing but also have a subtle and delightful fragrance that can attract beneficial insects, such as bees and butterflies, to the garden. Catmint 'Leeds Castle' combines both foliage and floral interest, making it a versatile choice for borders, herb gardens, or as a softening edge along pathways. Its appearance is typical of the Nepeta genus, blending an informal cottage garden aesthetic with the refined beauty of its delicate blossoms.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Catmint, Catnip

    • Common names

      Nepeta 'Leeds Castle'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Nepeta 'Leeds Castle', commonly known as catmint, is generally considered non-toxic to humans. Ingesting small quantities of this plant is unlikely to cause poisoning in humans and is typically safe when used appropriately. However, as with any plant, individual allergic reactions or sensitivities are possible and consuming large quantities could potentially lead to gastrointestinal discomfort or other symptoms. It's always prudent to handle plants with care and avoid ingesting plant material that is not explicitly intended for human consumption.

    • To pets

      Catmint is known for being of particular interest to cats, due to its attractant qualities. It is generally not considered toxic to pets and is often used in pet products for its stimulating effect on cats. However, ingestion of large amounts of the plant could potentially lead to mild gastrointestinal upset. It's important to monitor your pet's interaction with the plant and consult with a veterinarian if there are any signs of adverse reactions.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Spread

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts Pollinators: Nepeta 'Leeds Castle' is known for attracting bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects to the garden, promoting pollination.
    • Drought Tolerant: Once established, it is quite tolerant of drought, making it suitable for xeriscaping or low-water gardens.
    • Low Maintenance: This plant requires minimal care once established and is generally free from major pest and disease issues.
    • Aesthetic Appeal: With its attractive, lavender-colored flowers and gray-green foliage, it adds color and texture to garden designs.
    • Fragrant Foliage: The leaves of the plant have a pleasant fragrance when brushed against or crushed, offering sensory stimulation in the garden.
    • Deer and Rabbit Resistant: The plant is not a preferred food source for deer and rabbits, which helps to prevent browsing damage.
    • Long Blooming: It has a relatively long flowering period, providing extended visual interest throughout its blooming season.
    • Herbaceous Perennial: As a perennial, it will return year after year, providing a reliable presence in the landscape.
    • Ground Cover: Its growth habit makes it an excellent ground cover, helping to suppress weeds and cover bare spots in the garden.
    • Border Planting: With its neat, clump-forming habit, Nepeta 'Leeds Castle' is well-suited for border plantings and edging in garden beds.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be used as an insect repellent when the oils are extracted and applied to the skin or clothing as it contains the compound nepetalactone which is distasteful to many insects.
    • As a natural fertilizer, the leaves of the Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be composted and added to garden soil, providing essential nutrients to plants as they decompose.
    • The dried leaves of the Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be placed in bookshelves or wardrobes to impart a pleasant fragrance and potentially deter fabric-eating insects.
    • Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can act as a companion plant in the garden, potentially deterring certain pests from more vulnerable plants.
    • The flowers and leaves of the Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be used in potpourri mixtures to create a calming and relaxing household aroma.
    • Providing enrichment for domesticated animals, particularly felines, crushed leaves of the Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be used to fill pet toys.
    • Incorporated into arts and crafts, the leaves and flowers of Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be utilized to create natural dyes for fabrics or paper.
    • When practicing witchcraft or Wicca, Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be included in ritualistic practices for love spells or relaxation rites.
    • Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be used as a natural mulch to retain soil moisture and suppress weed growth in garden beds.
    • As a natural decorative element, the leaves and blooms of the Catnip 'Leeds Castle' can be included in cut flower arrangements to add a touch of greenery indoors.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    Catmint is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    Catmint is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Relaxation - Nepeta, commonly known as Catmint, often symbolizes relaxation due to its mild sedative properties appreciated by both humans and cats.
    • Affection - Catmint can symbolize affection since it is irresistibly attractive to cats, evidence of a mutual fondness between the plant and the animal.
    • Playfulness - Given the playful behavior exhibited by cats under the influence of Catmint, the plant is often associated with lightheartedness and fun.
    • Community and Friendship - Nepeta 'Leeds Castle' has a potential to foster social interaction and community spirit, as catmint gatherings can attract felines and thus create bonds among them and their owners.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Catmint, commonly referred to by its botanical name Nepeta 'Leeds Castle', requires moderate watering. During the growing season, water the plant when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, which usually equates to about once a week depending on the climate. It's essential to provide deep, infrequent watering to establish a strong root system, so aim to provide about one to two gallons per plant during each watering session. Over-watering can lead to root rot, so ensure good drainage. The plant is drought-tolerant once established, and watering can be reduced.

  • sunLight

    Catmint thrives in full sun to partial shade. For optimal growth and flowering, place your Nepeta 'Leeds Castle' in a location where it will receive at least six hours of sunlight daily. They can tolerate some light shade, especially in hotter climates, but too much shade can result in leggy plants and reduced flowering.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Catmint prefers temperate climates and generally does well in USDA zones 3-8. It can withstand winter temperatures as low as -40 degrees Fahrenheit and summer temperatures up to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. However, the ideal temperature range for growing catmint is between 55 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning catmint promotes bushier growth and more profuse blooming. Trim back your Nepeta 'Leeds Castle' in early spring to shape the plant and remove any dead or damaged growth. After the first flush of flowers fades, cut the plant back by one-third to encourage a second bloom period. Late summer or fall is also a good time to trim back the plant if it has become untidy.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    For catmint (Nepeta 'Leeds Castle'), the best soil mix is well-draining with a blend of garden soil, compost, and perlite or sand. The soil pH should be slightly acidic to neutral, ranging from 6.0 to 7.0 for optimal growth.

  • plantRepotting

    Catmint (Nepeta 'Leeds Castle') generally does not need to be repotted often as it thrives outdoors; however, if grown in a container, repotting every 2-3 years or when roots become crowded is adequate.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Catmint (Nepeta 'Leeds Castle') is adaptable to a wide range of humidity levels and does not require high humidity, making it suitable for average outdoor conditions where it typically thrives best.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place catmint in a sunny spot and ensure good air circulation.

    • Outdoor

      Plant catmint in full sun to partial shade and well-draining soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      3-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The Nepeta 'Leeds Castle', commonly known as Catmint, starts its life cycle as a seed, which under the right conditions of warmth and moisture, will germinate and sprout into a seedling. As the seedling matures, it develops into a vegetative state, growing stems and leaves in a bushy habit typical of the Nepeta genus. During its growth phase, the plant establishes a deep root system and extensive foliage, preparing for the flowering stage that usually occurs in late spring or early summer. The flowering stage is characterized by the emergence of small, lavender-blue flowers that attract pollinators and are highly appreciated in gardens for their scent and aesthetic appeal. After pollination, the flowers produce seeds, completing the reproductive cycle. The plant may enter a period of dormancy during colder months, only to rejuvenate and start the cycle anew with the return of favorable growing conditions in the following season.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • For the Nepeta 'Leeds Castle', commonly known as the Leeds Castle Catmint, one of the most popular methods of propagation is by division. This typically is done in the early spring or autumn when the plant is not in active bloom. To propagate by division, the gardener should gently lift the clump of catmint from the ground using a shovel or fork, ensuring a substantial amount of root is attached. The clump is then carefully broken apart into smaller sections, each with a good amount of root and several shoots. These divisions can then be immediately replanted into well-draining soil, spaced approximately 18 inches (about 45 centimeters) apart to allow for ample growth. Adequate watering after planting helps in establishing the new divisions. Through division, new catmint plants will establish quickly and start to grow, providing the same aromatic foliage and lavender-blue flowers as the parent plant.