Tea garden


#41

Yes, I have a hard time flowering the red variety. The white variety flowers profusely in a tiny pot all winter. I got to try an amazing jam made from the flowers but didn’t realize there was osmanthus wine!

EDIT: I also have an Aglaia plant @IL847 Do you know if this is edible? I’ve only known it as a dooryard ornamental, but the flowers smell like they’d be great in tea too.


#42

If you live near chinese grocery stores, large ones,(if there is Chinese liquid store, it definitely carries osmanthus wine) some of them might carry some selections of osmanthus wines. Most of the wines are not expensive either. The legend said there is a man and a white wabbit lives in the moon, Americans might be able to find that out in 2023 when they landed on the moon😂. There is also a huge osmanthus tree . The man keeps chopping it down and the tree grows back every day. The man uses the osmanthus flowers to make delicious wine… Austrauts might get chance to have a drink in the moon . hopefully they won’t get drunk and drunk driver the vehicle on the way back😂
The Agalaia flowers are edible, most times are used in the process of adding scent to the tea (camellia Sinensis). Itself is not directly used as tea. But, by all means, it can be put in hot water and brew into tea, just don’t know how good it tastes.


#43

Interesting. I have two loquat trees, I’ll have to give it a go as a tea.

EDIT: There’s a lot of videos on YouTube with step by step instructions:


#44

Loquat tree leaves are traditional used as medicine in China as antitussive to suppress coughing. Just make sure to brush all the fuzzy off on the back before you brew it into tea.


#45

Thanks for the tips! I’ll have to look for the wine next time I’m in Philadelphia. 桂花酒 right?

I only knew about the moon rabbits in regards to the mid-autumn festival! Never heard of that tree up there :smile:


#46

https://www.mountainvalleygrowers.com/teaherbgardenzone5.htm

Kind of neat packages this company sells or, single, live-plants. Mountain Valley Growers.

Well shipping isn’t all that fair. 40 for the 6 plants and 30 for shipping to IL from CA for 3" pots. 70 bucks for 6 plants. hmm. Not my kind of deal, but a cool website full of cool plants.


#47

I just bought a Camellia sinensis tea plant from a local nursery. Not sure if it was this thread or another that put the idea into my head. I’m looking forward to brewing my own tea in the years ahead. I’ll have to get some herbs, mint, maybe lemon balm to entice my wife and kids. Now I just need to figure out where everything will go!


#48

I got all my unique carpet thyme from them and while definitely expensive they were healthy little plants that grew very well and they had many unique varieties of mint and thyme that i very much wanted that were available no where else. They also have the real curly mint which for me was extremely hard to find. I wished i had gotten scented geraniums as the shipping is definitely rough.

@Barkslip Maybe call them i went and found my invoice and the shipping was 25 bucks for like 12 small pots (which is still rough) it seems like its double charging you although things are crazy this year.


#49

I’ve had one for a couple years now. Mine got blasted by the sun earlier this spring and that burnt a lot of the leaves (after being inside all winter). Does great in winter inside in front of a south facing window…lots of blooms. Outside ive been leaving mine in almost complete shade and it has come back with a lot of new growth. Not sure how much it likes heat and humidity.


#50

That’s pretty cool! Thanks for sharing.


#51

How do people make tea from lemon verbena leaves, please?

I googled it and the suggestions were all over the place:

  • from 10 leaves per 2 cups of water to 3 leaves for 4 cups of water.
  • from putting leaves in water and let it boil for 15 minutes to heating water to almost boiling and pouring it over the leaves in a teapot.

Which works for you? I prefer strong flavor, I guess. This will be my first lemon verbena tea.


#52

@mamuang definitely boil the water first wait for it to stop boiling then pour over a tablespoon or so of leaves and then cover the top of your cup while it seeps. This is the go to method for most all herbal teas.


#53

I assume chopped leaves, right? Thank you.


#54

I was always told to just rip the leaves and not cut them if possible, I think this keeps less sediment in your tea and along with the phenols is one of the main benefits in doing fresh herbs for teas. I just bought my wife a new stainless steel strainer for fresh teas for her birthday!


#55

When I make tea from fresh leaves of any sort, I usually gently crush and bruise the leaves, or maybe tear them up if they are particularly large. For dried leaves, I either leave them whole or crumble large leaves. For most things, I find you need a fair amount of fresh leaf. I’d probably start with a small handful per mug and adjust to taste. Lemon verbena is fairly potent, so you may need less. For dried leaves, the amount that comes in a teabag is a good place to start per mug, though I usually like a bit more.


#56

I had never tried fresh herb for a tea purpose before. When I drink tea, It’s tea in bags or herbal tea in bags. I do use several herbs/veggies in cooking all the time i.e. lemongrass, mint, basil, ginger, galangal, etc but I don’t consider them tea. They are ingredients of my food :grin:

My first fresh herb tea experience was with this lemon verbena. It was fragrant and pleasant. I like it. It reminded me of lemongrass. This friend also gave me another herb to try but the name escape me at the moment.

Thanks @RichardRoundTree and @jcguarneri for the tips of how to brew it.


#57

Thank you for all the wonderful cooking ideas @mamuang!

Its very enjoyable with fresh herbs isn’t it?

May i suggest you brew up some of your bergamont leaves / bee balm that has not been sprayed with anything, I do half bergamont, half spearmint or bergamont and lemon verbena. I wish i could keep lemongrass happy but my ginger is doing good in my bathroom but i do not know if its really growing fast enough! I think next year i may try to do some annual ginger the way you do


#58

Lemongrass is very easy to grow. When you buy them from an Asian market, put them in a container of water until they root.

Once they root, you can pot them or put them in ground. They are weeds so they grow like weeds.


#59

My mom does the same thing and it works excellent for her and she always has fresh lemongrass, Everytime I try it however they just slowly wither and die. I figured it was the lack of humidity as i have decent window light? I have never tried to put them outside here however…


#60

This is interesting. Not very cold hardy it seems.