Tea Herbs: Leaves to Brew

Tea Herbs: Healthy and Delicious

What could be more invigorating than filling your teapot with a blend of fresh tea herbs, and enjoying an early morning cup of herbal tea from your own herb garden!

Each day you could make a different brew – citrus flavored lemony herbs like lemon verbena and lemon balm, refreshing peppermint or spearmint, a tonic of sage and yarrow flower.

The combinations are endless, if you grow your own tea herbs.

You’ll find your chosen blends vary with the seasons.

Summery teas could include lemon or cinnamon basil, along with tender pineapple sage and a bit of scented geranium. The pushy mint plants will provide you with zesty leaves spring, summer and fall. In winter, you can use your dried herbs and still enjoy your favorite blends.

Your home grown herbal teas have several benefits. First, they are fresh, and grown free of pesticides and other chemicals routinely used in commercial growing and processing. They cost next to nothing, beyond the initial cost of the seeds or starter plants. And you can grow a variety of tea herbs, giving you an unlimited number of tea blends to enjoy.

Herbal teas are mainly made from leaves, but can include some flowers or seeds. Calendula flowers, rose petals and spikes of lavender make interesting flavored teas. Seeds from dill, along with chive flower heads can make a bouillon-type tea along with parsley and savory leaves.

Some of the easiest tea herbs to grow are:

Tea Herbs: MintMint – This cooling and refreshing plant, with several varieties will need restraining in your garden, since they’re rapid runners. The active ingredients act on the digestive system, helping with nausea, cramps and abdominal pains. Choose 3 or more varieties, such as spearmint, apple mint, peppermint, pineapple mint and ginger mint, and plant them in a half-barrel. In fall, cut and dry the leafy stalks for winter teas.

Chamomile – Sprinkle some chamomile seeds on any soil, and you’ll have chamomile forever. Harvest the flowers for teas, either as buds or full blooms, and dry them. Be careful not to over-steep the tea, as it will get bitter. Chamomile blends well with spearmint or lemon balm.Tea herbs: Chamomile

Bergamot – This decorative herb, often grown for its gorgeous color, requires moist fertile soil. Use the leaves in blends with other herbs, or even with black tea.

Tea Herbs: Bergamot

Roses – Not usually though of as a tea herb, the hip or rose fruit is often brewed for tea. Rugosa or wild roses make the best teas. Dry rosehips by cutting them in half and scooping out the seeds and fibers. Once dried, you can pulverize the hard hips in the blender. They can also be used fresh, as can rose petals.

Lemon Herbs – Three lemon-scented and flavored herbs add a citrus tang to your herb teas. They are lemon balm, lemon verbena and lemon grass. The first two are perennials, and can be used fresh or dried. Lemon grass is a tropical plant, and can be grown in a container. Just a few spears make a mild and delicious lemony tea.

Tea Herbs: lemon verbena

Lemon Verbena

Most tea herbs should be steeped longer than black tea, but you will have to experiment, since taste varies from herb to herb. Some, like sage and rosemary are stronger and more bitter, while lemon balm and anise-hyssop are milder.

Teas from garden grown herbs are as varied as your imagination, and a little experimental brewing and sipping will be necessary to find your perfect tea herbs for your palate.

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Beneficial Herbs - Nana's Garden Gate says

[…] gardener I know grows at least one or two of the most common garden herbs. Sometimes it’s a few pots of basil and parsley on the kitchen windowsill. Others have gone full […]

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