Oval-leafed Mint Bush Prostanthera ovalifolia

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Hard-care
thousand flowered mint-bush


Prostanthera ovalifolia, commonly known as the Oval-leaf Mint Bush, is an Australian native shrub recognized for its aromatic foliage and ornamental qualities. The leaves are characteristically oval-shaped, often with a slightly serrated edge, and emit a pleasant minty scent when crushed. They are a vibrant green, adding to the plant's lush appearance. The Mint Bush is also adorned with attractive flowers, typically ranging in color from purple to violet. These flowers are tubular and small, often appearing in clusters that create a showy display in the flowering season. The stems are somewhat square in profile, a trait common among mint family plants, and they support the growth of these dense, green leaves. Overall, the Mint Bush presents a bushy and rounded shape, making it a favored choice in gardens for its aesthetic appeal and fragrant presence.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Oval-leaf Mint Bush, Rounded Mintbush

    • Common names

      Prostanthera ovalifolia.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Oval-leafed mint bush (Prostanthera ovalifolia) is not widely documented as a toxic plant to humans. It is primarily grown for ornamental purposes, and there are no common reports of significant toxicity upon ingestion. As with many plants, individual sensitivities or allergic reactions could possibly occur, but general toxicity symptoms from consuming parts of the oval-leafed mint bush are not well-documented.

    • To pets

      Similar to its effects on humans, the oval-leafed mint bush (Prostanthera ovalifolia) is not commonly known to be toxic to pets. While this plant is used mainly for decorative reasons, there is a lack of evidence suggesting significant toxicity towards animals upon ingestion. Nonetheless, pet owners should always exercise caution as individual animals might react differently to consuming plant material, potentially presenting gastrointestinal upset or an allergic reaction even if the plant is not considered broadly toxic.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      3-5 feet (0.9-1.5 meters)

    • Spread

      3-5 feet (0.9-1.5 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aesthetic Appeal: Prostanthera ovalifolia, commonly known as Oval-leafed Mint Bush, adds visual interest to gardens with its attractive foliage and vibrant purple flowers that bloom in spring and summer.
    • Habitat Support: Provides food and shelter for a variety of insects, including bees, which are essential pollinators for many plants.
    • Fragrance: The leaves of the Oval-leafed Mint Bush emit a pleasant minty fragrance when crushed, contributing to a scented garden environment.
    • Privacy Screen: With its dense growth habit, Oval-leafed Mint Bush can be used as a hedge or privacy screen in residential gardens.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, the plant is relatively drought-tolerant, making it suitable for water-wise landscaping in appropriate climates.
    • Versatility: The plant can be pruned into various shapes and sizes, allowing it to fit into diverse garden designs and styles.
    • Wildlife Friendly: Attracts a variety of native birds that feed on its nectar, providing natural entertainment and supporting local ecosystems.
    • Low Maintenance: Generally requires minimal care beyond the occasional pruning to maintain desired shape and remove any dead or diseased wood.
    • Erosion Control: Can be used in sloped gardens to help prevent soil erosion through its root system.
    • Cultural Significance: Indigenous to Australia, Prostanthera ovalifolia holds significance in native landscaping, echoing the natural beauty and flora of the region.

  • 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

    • Ornamental Hedging: Prostanthera ovalifolia, commonly known as Oval-leaf Mint Bush, can be used for creating decorative hedges in gardens due to its dense foliage.
    • Aromatic Oil: The leaves of the Oval-leaf Mint Bush can be used to extract essential oils that can be used in perfumery and aromatherapy for their fresh, minty fragrance.
    • Culinary Garnish: Fresh leaves of the Oval-leaf Mint Bush can be used as a garnish for dishes, adding a minty flavor and attractive green touch to meals.
    • Floral Arrangements: The aromatic and attractive purple flowers of the Oval-leaf Mint Bush can be included in floral arrangements for aesthetic purposes.
    • Privacy Screening: When planted in rows or clusters, the Oval-leaf Mint Bush can provide a natural screen, offering privacy to garden areas.
    • Butterfly Attraction: The flowers of the plant are known to attract butterflies, thus can be used in butterfly gardens to promote biodiversity.
    • Natural Dyes: The leaves and flowers of the Oval-leaf Mint Bush can be used to extract natural dyes for fabric and craft projects.
    • Education: The plant can be used for educational purposes in schools or botanical gardens to teach about native Australian flora and plant adaptations.
    • Erosion Control: Due to its bushy growth habit, the Oval-leaf Mint Bush can be planted on slopes to help stabilize soil and prevent erosion.
    • Windbreaks: The dense foliage of the Oval-leaf Mint Bush makes it suitable for planting as a windbreak to protect more delicate plants in the garden.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Oval-leafed Mint Bush is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Oval-leafed Mint Bush is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Resilience: Prostanthera ovalifolia, commonly known as mint bush, is noted for its ability to thrive in tough conditions, symbolizing the capacity to endure and prosper through adversity.
    • Rejuvenation: The mint bush often recovers quickly after being cut back, representing renewal and the ability to bounce back from challenges.
    • Protection: Traditionally, some mint species have been used for their aromatic properties to ward off pests, so mint bush can symbolize safeguarding what is valuable.
    • Healing: Many mint family plants are known for their medicinal uses, which extends a symbolic meaning of healing and soothing to the mint bush.

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

    The Australian Mint Bush, or Prostanthera ovalifolia, prefers consistent moisture but does not like to be waterlogged. It should be watered deeply once a week, making sure the soil is allowed to dry out slightly between waterings. During the summer or in hot climates, you may need to water it twice a week. Aim to provide at least 1 gallon of water per watering session for an established plant, depending on the size and soil conditions. Always adjust watering frequency based on weather conditions, less during cool or rainy periods and more during dry, hot spells.

  • sunLight

    The Australian Mint Bush needs a position where it receives full sun to partial shade for optimal growth. An ideal spot would provide it with at least 6 hours of sunlight daily, but it can also handle some shade during the hottest part of the day. Avoid deep shade locations, as this can inhibit the plant's growth and reduce flowering.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The Australian Mint Bush thrives in temperatures between 50°F and 85°F. It can survive brief periods of colder weather down to about 30°F but needs protection from frost. During extreme heat above 100°F, the plant may require additional watering and shade to prevent stress.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune the Australian Mint Bush after it finishes flowering to maintain its shape and encourage denser growth. This typically means an annual pruning in late spring or early summer. Remove any dead or damaged wood and trim back a third of the plant's size to keep it compact. Regular pruning also helps rejuvenate the plant and promote more vigorous growth.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Mintbush (Prostanthera ovalifolia) thrives in well-draining soil with a mixture of loam and organic matter like compost. A pH range of 5.5 to 6.5 is ideal. Add perlite or sand for extra drainage.

  • plantRepotting

    Mintbush should be repotted every two to three years to prevent the roots from becoming pot-bound and to replenish the nutrients in the soil.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Mintbush prefers moderate to high humidity levels but is quite adaptable and can thrive in average household humidity conditions.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Provide bright, indirect light and well-draining soil.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in well-draining soil, partial to full sun.

    • Hardiness zone

      8-11 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Prostanthera ovalifolia, commonly known as Oval-leaf Mint Bush, begins its life cycle when its seeds germinate, preferably in well-drained soil and a partially shaded site after the dangers of frost have passed. Seedlings emerge and establish a root system, followed by the development of characteristic oval-shaped leaves. As the plant matures, it enters the vegetative stage, growing rapidly and branching out to form a dense, rounded shrub that can reach up to 3 meters in height. During spring and summer, Oval-leaf Mint Bush produces tubular, purple, or violet flowers that attract pollinators such as bees, which are essential for the plant's reproductive phase. After pollination, the flowers develop into small capsules containing seeds, which, when mature, are dispersed by wind or wildlife. The plant enters a period of dormancy during colder months, reducing growth and conserving energy for the next growing season.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • For Prostanthera ovalifolia, commonly known as the Oval-leaf Mint Bush, the most popular method of propagation is through semi-hardwood cuttings. This typically takes place in late summer or early fall. You should select a healthy stem of current season's growth, cutting a length of about 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 centimeters). The lower leaves are then stripped off, and the cut end dipped into a rooting hormone powder or gel to encourage root development. The cutting is then placed into a well-draining potting mix, ensuring the basal end is in contact with the medium. It's important to maintain a humid environment for the cutting, either by using a propagation chamber or by covering the pot with a plastic bag, while making sure that the leaves do not touch the plastic. Cuttings should be kept in a warm, shaded location until roots have developed, which usually takes several weeks.