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  • Writer's pictureJessie Desmond

Wintergreen Plant

Wintergreen is considered a Christmas plant due to it's fragrance, taste, and coloration. It's also almost completely edible.


Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens)

Other names: Boxberry, American Wintergreen, Checkerberry


Plant type: Perennial, ground cover

Zones: 3-8, winter hardy

Growing: Partial sun, well-drainage soil


Flowering: Summer months, pink and white flowers

Size: 4-8 inches tall, up to 12 inches wide

Planting: Outside, inside, planters, in the ground - all good


Plant Use: This is not a mint plant, but has a fragrance and taste that we commonly associate with mint. The leaves can be used to make wintergreen tea and wintergreen oil. Wintergreen oil is typically added to food and candy, popularly chewing gum. The berries are edible, but have a menthol taste that might not make them a favorite berry.


Fragrance: The plant itself is very fragrant. If you enjoy the smell of wintergreen, you might want to keep a potted plant inside. It is abundantly fragrant and you may need to move it room to room to avoid an overwhelming odor. As an outdoor garden plant this could be incorporated as a fragrant, pet-friendly plant around seating areas and pet use areas.


Toxicity: None. Pet safe.


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