How to grow your own herbal tea garden
Many ingredients for medicinal tea blends are from herbal plants. Growing your own herbs for tea blends will bring you so much joy, and is a simple way to get your family involved with growing your own food. In this post I'll share some herbs even small-gardeners can grow in kitchen containers, porch pots, or other containers, and how to grow your own herbal tea garden, regardless of the amount of space you have!
Some plants are easier to grow and manage than others. Growing an herbal tea garden is realistic even without a green thumb or large space. And also try my favorite tea blends that include some of these easily grown herbs. I'm enjoying a cup of lemon balm from the garden as I type! Here are some of the best plants for your diy herbal tea garden.
Mints for Cooling and Refreshing Tea
Peppermint and spearmint are favorite tea ingredients, used both individually as a straight peppermint tea or in blends to add a cooling element to any other tea ingredient. The mints are not only easy to grow in containers but usually should be grown in containers to prevent spreading via runners throughout neighboring garden spaces.
With so many mint cultivars available, it is possible to spice up a tea blend with chocolate mints, pure spearmints, licorice mint, apple mint, or even some citrus mints like lemon and lime mints. Growing mints in containers will prevent them from spreading but will allow them to grow very well, to a height of about 12-18 inches. Gardeners should give mints moderate water levels and full or part sun. The ability of mint to grow well in partial shade is a boon to container gardeners.
For specifics of caring for thyme: visit this page here.
Sage for Cleansing and Medicinal Tea
Sage has been used for ages as a perennial culinary herb but also as a medicinal and strong tea. Sage tea is like the aroma of the herb – strong, semi-bitter, but generally pleasant.
Sage tolerates semi-drought well, so gardeners find it easy to grow in container plantings. The leaves of sage are highly aromatic, in addition to being attractively textured. As a tea, sage was used historically for cleansing, and its antiseptic properties make it useful for sore throats when people are sick. Most sources seem to agree that the leaves are best harvested when they are young and tender before the plant becomes too woody and even more bitter.
For more specifics on caring for sage, visit this page here
Rosemary for a Mood and Brain boost
Consuming rosemary has been shown to reduce anxiety, boost mood, and improve concentration and memory. Adding rosemary to your tea makes it a brain boosting tonic. Rosemary is also one of the best known plants to consume for good eye health. Rosemary tea contains compounds that can help protect your vision by slowing the progression and severity of diseases like cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
Why rosemary is great to grow indoors: rosemary is low maintenance and doesn't need to be watered frequently. Keep rosemary in a sunny, warm place, as it doesn't like the cold. If you’re growing rosemary indoors, ideally you will find a south facing window which receives adequate sunlight. If you're a food photographer like me, it's probably the same window you're using for your food photos. 😉
For more specifics on caring for rosemary, visit this page here:
Thyme for respiratory health
Thyme contains numerous of minerals and vitamins that promote good immune support. This herb is abundant in vitamin C, potassium and magnesium. Thyme has antimicrobial properties, which help reduce germs in food and can improve your gut microbes and your overall intestinal health.
Rosemary and thyme have identical growing needs, so you can plant them together if you desire!
For specifics of caring for thyme: visit this page here.
Lemon Balm for Easy Tea Blending
Lemon balm is an herbaceous plant that grows well in containers and tolerates part shade well. This plant tends to spread in the garden spaces, so it is a good choice for planters. In tea, lemon balm adds a predictably citrus tone. This makes it a great choice for lightening stronger tea ingredients. Or try adding a refreshing, uplifting feel to an herbal tea blend. Lemon balm shouldn't be grown in full, direct sunlight for the best flavor.
Historically the tea was used to balance hormones, to relax upset stomachs and other digestive ails, and lift spirits when someone is emotionally down. For the strongest flavor, harvest leaves for tea before the early summer flowers appear and dry what is needed to last throughout the year. Lemon balm divides easily or can be grown from cuttings, so gardeners shouldn't be afraid to ask their neighbors to share!
How growing your own herbs for tea can save you money
Whatever gardening situation a home landscaper is faced with, everyone has enough room in a porch container or porch rail to grow some of these potted herbs for homemade tea blends. The element of self-sufficient living is a refreshing change from having to purchase everything and can help cut back on the family grocery budget as well. Store bought herbs always went bad for me in a day or two. Grown from home and properly cared for - they thrive and save us money.
Choose organic practices for Herbs even small-gardeners can grow for tea blends
As always, gardeners who are growing plants for consumption will want to make sure all the plants are grown free of pesticides and other toxic chemicals. When possible, use organically grown plants only. Visit this page to learn how to start your own organic garden, and download a free garden journal to keep you organized and in control.
Favorite herbal tea from Herbs even small-gardeners can grow for tea blends
How to dry your herbs for tea
How to dry your home grown herbs:
- Harvest your herb during mid-morning.
- Cut including the branches of your herb, and not just the leaves of the plant, so that you will have enough space to tie their ends into bundles and hang them upside down.
How to store your tea blends:
- Store your blends in an airtight container.
- Label them so you remember what you've blended.
- Keep them out of direct sunlight.
Have any questions about how to grow your own herbal tea garden? Contact me or leave a comment below!