Learn to Grow Your Own Herbal Tea
Did you know that after water, tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world? From chai to roobios, tea lovers have a wide variety of flavours to choose from! But there is something to be said about herbal teas. Herbal teas have a long history in traditional herbal medicine to treat various ailments. Teas, such as camomile and peppermint, are naturally caffeine-free and have calming properties. While these teas can be conveniently bought at any supermarket or specialty store, nothing beats the freshness and the flavour of home-grown tea!
Growing your own herbal tea is easy to do and doesn't take up much space. They will also beautify your home and garden. Many of these plants are also wonderfully aromatic! Tea herbs can be grown in the garden bed or in containers on a windowsill. Start by choosing your favourite herbs and follow the gardening instructions on the seed packet or care tag. Most herbs don't like wet feet, so be sure to use well-draining soil! Water regularly, but don't over water. As a general guideline, only water when the soil is dry to the touch. To harvest, simply pinch off the flowers/leaves. Harvest regularly to keep plants bushy and attractive.
To make herbal tea, steep the flowers/leaves in hot water for about 5 minutes. About 1-2 tablespoons of fresh flowers/leaves should be enough for a cup of tea. Try mixing and matching plants for different flavours.
Here is a list of some popular herbal teas you can grow:
Chamomile tea is known for its calming and relaxing properties. Great for inducing sleep! If planting outdoors, simply sow seeds either late fall or early spring. Excellent for container gardening. Plant in full sun or light shade. Flowers can also be dried for future use.
Peppermint tea is refreshing andcan relieve upset stomachs. It is one of the easiest herbs to grow. In fact, peppermint can become invasive and take over other plants in the garden plant. Grow in containers to keep plants in control. Plant in full sun or partial shade.
Lavender is wonderfully fragrant and has many health benefits. The tea can relieve stress and anxiety; it is often used as a sleep aid. Plant in full sun in sandy soil. They would be ideal as borders in the garden, but can also be grown containers. The flower buds are used to make the tea.
While the root is used in medicine, the cone flowers make a wonderful herbal tea. Echinacea tea can help boost immune systems, warding off colds and other viruses. Plant in full sun or partial shade in well-drained soil. Ideal for borders and backgrounds, along with container gardening. Deadhead to encourage new blooms.
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