How to Grow Herbal Tea
There are lots of reasons why people grow plants or pick up the indoor gardening hobby. One of the most fun reasons is to have stuff to eat or drink that you grew yourself.
Many people grow vegetables and herbs, but have you considered growing your own herbal tea?
That’s exactly what this article covers. Here’s how to grow herbal tea in your indoor garden.
Select the herbs
Lots of different herbs are used to make tea. Some are easier to grow than others. Here are suggestions for herbs that are easy to grow indoors and work well in tea blends:
- Lemon balm
- Daisies (not technically an herb, but can be grown indoors and are edible)
Of course, only select herbs that you like the taste of for your herbal tea garden. You can also use dried lemon or orange peel to add to your herbal tea blends.
Select the pot and growing medium
A lot of herbs require well-drained soil, and overwatering can kill them quickly. That’s why clay pots are good for herbs, but any pot that drains well combined with a soil or growing medium that doesn’t hold onto water too long will work.
Soil used for cacti and other succulents is actually really good for herbs because it drains well. You can find succulent soil mixes at our garden shop at The Tye-Dyed Iguana in Fairview Heights:
Select the location
Many herbs require a good amount of light, with full to partial sun being the preference for most of these plants. You can accomplish this either by putting them near a window or by putting them under a grow light.
Kitchen windows are popular location choices for herbs, but it’s not necessary to grow them in the kitchen.
Harvest the herbs
Once you have herbs successfully growing indoors, you can start harvesting them for herbal tea. Generally, the leaves will be the part you use. In the case of daisies, you can use both the leaves and the flowers.
When making herbal tea blends, plant leaves should make up the majority of the blend.
Dry the herbs
Finally, after you’ve harvested your herbs and snipped off the pieces that will be used in your herbal tea blend, you’ll need to dry the herbs before using them for tea. To dry herbs, place them in a single layer, spaced out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Place the baking sheet with herbs in an oven at low temperature (about 200 or 250 degrees Fahrenheit), and leave the oven door cracked open to allow steam to escape. Dry them in the oven until they are crisp to the touch but not burnt. Burning the herbs will make the tea taste much different (and probably not good!). Remember, you’re dehydrating them, not cooking them.
You can also hang the herbs to dry if you’re not in a hurry.
Once your herbs are dried, you can store them in a container for several months to use for brewing herbal tea.