Mentha: Best known as mint; although there are hundreds of varieties of mint, M. spicata (spearmint) also known as garden or common mint is the most associated with using fresh or dried in cooking. Origin: Most mints are native to Europe and Asia, although there are some which are indigenous to the Americas and Australia. Many think that the colonists introduced mint to the USA, however there is evidence that Native American Indians were using a form of mint well before their arrival.