Mentha piperita


Have you ever heard it said, "everything happens for a reason"?  But, has it crossed your mind that something may be occurring for reasons other than what you've always been told; that things have a more practical purpose?  For instance, peppermint does not grow and produce oils to provide us with delicious chewing gum.  It produces said oils for a reason that is much more self-effectual.

Menthol, the active ingredient that is used in many products commonly found in kitchens and medicine cabinets alike is used by the peppermint plant as a predator deterrent.  It is extremely useful in dissuading lady bugs, ants, and other common predators from lunching on its leaves.  Of course we as humans also have to deal with insects and rodents that we deem to be "pesky."  Spraying a few drops of diluted menthol about your house and yard can keep away all sorts of organisms, ranging from ants and mosquitoes to mice, squirrels and even rabbits!  Isn't it ironic that the ancient Romans viewed peppermint as a sign of hospitality?  Another organic compound, camphor, is also said to share these same repelling characteristics.

To learn more about the ways that humans use menthol, continue on to the medicinal properties page!  Or, go back home.