Harvest from your herb garden to create tea infusions. Mint, chamomile and lemon balm are just a few possibilities for herbal teas.
You can drink them for health benefits, but mostly because a cup of tea in the afternoon is almost always restorative.
Tips for Herbal Tea:
- Before making teas, be sure that the plants are edible and have been organically grown with no pesticides.
- Gather leaves and flowers in the morning, after the dew has evaporated.
- Spread in a single layer on paper towels or a drying screen.
- Let dry for 10 days out of direct sunlight.
- Crush leaves, seal in jars and label.
- When it’s time to make tea, crush leaves into a tea ball and pour boiling water over. Let steep for 10 minutes.
- Be creative with herbs, locally grown honey, and citrus rinds like lemon and orange.
Our 5 favorite herbs for Tea:
1. Chamomile. These petite, daisy-like blooms make a relaxing tea when dried and can be used in potpourri, too. Chamomile makes a sweet addition to an herb or flower border.
2. Mint. Why does mint always come with the recommendation to plant in a container? Because it will take over your gardening world in the blink of an eye. Infusing the fragrant leaves in teas and adding flavor to recipes will help you use up the bounty.
3. Lemon balm. Tea made from lemon balm is reputed to alleviate headaches — reason enough to give this plant a try in your herb garden. The plant is a hardy perennial herb bush that grows a couple feet high with small white flowers and lemony leaves.
4. Bee balm. The No. 1 reason to grow bee balm is for the splendid red and pink flowers that bring the pollinators into the garden. Pick the lemony leaves right before flowering for a fragrant tea.
5. Lavender. Pick lavender’s buds and flowers, dry them and use for tea. Lavender grows slowly from seed; it’s best to start with seedlings or propagate from cuttings.
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