For some people, tea is a warm, comforting beverage. For others, it’s an entire way of life! The history of humanity cultivating and enjoying teas goes back over 5000 years, and it is still one of the best natural at-home wellness practices you can do. Whether you’re a seasoned herbal connoisseur or you’re just looking to get into homegrown teas, we’ve got you covered! Here are some of the best herbs to grow indoors for tea, some of our favourite blends, and how to preserve your fresh tea herbs for the fall and winter months.
The Best Tea Plants to Grow in Powell River
Many of the best herbs used to make tea are super easy to grow at home! They’re also fairly quick-growing, meaning you can continue to harvest them all summer. Here are the best herbs to grow for your next tasty cup of tea:
Known for its calming effects, this sweet, flowering plant is one of the easiest to grow and is an herbal favourite among tea enthusiasts worldwide! Chamomile needs only about 4 hours of sunlight per day, making it a great tea plant to keep on a south-facing windowsill.
If you’re prone to an upset tummy, mint is a must-have in your tea garden! A multi-purpose herb, mint is super easy to grow in containers and will flourish with lots of sun and moist soil. Rotate mint plants regularly, as they tend to tilt toward the light.
Although it’s a member of the mint family, lemon balm has a decidedly unique flavour that makes for a delicious cup of tea. Like other mint varieties, it can be quite invasive, so we recommend growing this herb in a separate container.
We love ginger tea, both for its incredible taste and its amazing benefits for digestive health. Ginger’s another easy plant to grow in your tea garden; simply plant a ginger rhizome into a pot of high-quality potting mix and keep it moist and away from direct sunlight!
Some other superb herbs to grow for tea include thyme, rosemary, lemon verbena, lavender, sage, St. John’s Wort, and jasmine.
Incredible Herbal Infusions
All of your favourite herbs make great teas on their own, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with savouring their unique individual flavours and qualities. However, certain herbs pair exceptionally well in blended teas, and we think you should try these combos!
- Mint, chamomile, and lavender tea with a touch of honey.
- Chamomile tea with ginger and fresh lemon
- Lemon balm and mint tea
- Thyme and mint tea
Another blend that’s one of our absolute favourites is fresh sage and lemon. Try it with this easy recipe!
- Combine about ½ oz of fresh sage leaves in 4 cups of hot water
- Add 1 ½ teaspoons of lemon zest
- Mix in 2 tbsp of sugar
- Add in 3 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
- Steep everything for about 30 minutes for the best flavour
Drying and Storing Your Powell River Tea Herbs
Once you’ve mastered the art of growing tea herbs at home, you’ll want to keep enjoying your favourite blends all year! The best way to ensure a good supply is to grow them fresh indoors, but for tea-making purposes, it can be handy to have some dried herbs on-hand for a warm cup of tea anytime. You can dry fresh-cut leaves and sprigs regularly, as trimming herbs back helps them stay healthy and ensures continual growth.
Here are some tips for drying and storing your tea herbs:
- Let your herbs air-dry. Tie the stems together and hang them upside down in an airy location away from direct sunlight.
- Use a drying screen. You can purchase one of these or make your own!
- Dry your herbs in a food dehydrator. This is a bit faster than traditional air-dry and screen-dry methods, but make sure you use a low heat setting to retain the most flavour.
- Once your herbs are completely dried, remove the leaves and store them in airtight jars or other containers. Avoid crumbling the leaves until you’re ready to make your tea, as this will help them retain their flavour for longer.
- Store your dried herbs in cool, dark places free from humidity or changes in temperature. You can store herbs for up to a year in proper conditions.
If you’re ready to learn more about growing your own tea in Powell River, stop by and chat with us at Mother Nature for some expert advice, starter plants, and many more ways to get inspired for the upcoming planting season.