Spearmint (Mentha spicata) thrives throughout most temperate climates, and is a common garden mint around the world. A member of the Lamiaceae family, it is closely related to peppermint, bergamot mint and apple mint. Spearmint grows 1-3 feet tall and gets its name from the spear shaped, serrated leaves that adorn it.
These spear shaped, aromatic leaves are abundantly versatile. Fresh or dried, the leaves are used in many regional cuisines. They are often pressed to extract the essential oils that comprise its distinctive smell and taste. The oils of spearmint are high in limonene and carvone, both of which contribute to its minty freshness. Lesser-so than its counterpart peppermint, spearmint is also known for its menthol content.