If you are looking for new indoor garden ideas and enjoy a relaxing cup of herbal tea, why not combine the two by planting an indoor herb garden consisting of the best plants for herbal tea.
“I love using fresh and dried herbs as a relaxing herbal infusion or adding them to some of my favorite teas. By combining different ingredients, you can add a variety of flavors and benefits,” says Nadia de la Vega of Davidstea.
“When creating your own herbal blends, or infusing straight herbs, my advice is to focus on what you’re looking for in terms of experience and benefit: Do you prefer hot tea or are you looking for iced tea?”
“Are you looking for a digestion-friendly drink or a more calming, sleepy drink?”
Nadia de la Vega is the Tea Sustainability Manager at DAVIDsTEA. She is an expert on the benefits of drinking tea and the different herbs and plants used.
6 of the best herbs for growing your own herbal tea
Herbal tea can have many benefits, besides its refreshing taste. But before you start planting your own indoor herb garden, Tanya Anderson of Lovely Greens has the following safety tips:
“Never use a plant medicinally unless you are sure of what it can do.” If you have an underlying health problem, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or are taking other medications, please talk to your doctor before self-administering medication.
“Always exercise care when trying new plants as food or in herbal remedies. If you have any doubts about the identity of the plants you plan to use to make tea, it is best not to consume them.
Tanya Anderson is an author, educator, and YouTube personality passionate about organic gardening and soap making. It shares a simple ethos of green living with an emphasis on how planting a garden can bring resilience and connection to the natural world.
“Chamomile is a great tea you can take at bedtime to help your body relax throughout the day,” says Daniel Powers, founder of The Botanical Institute.
A 2018 study showed that chamomile is particularly effective in helping with mental health, as it appears to help relax the mind. Additionally, a 2017 study found that it also helps support increased sleep quality.
“This is an easy plant to grow from seed,” says garden writer Fiona Cumberbatch. “Choose German or Roman chamomile varieties. In the spring, fill the pot with all-purpose compost. Sprinkle a thin layer of seeds, and cover with a half-inch of compost,” she says.
You can plant your seedlings in the backyard about a foot apart in a sunny location. If your chamomile is part of an indoor growing system, you’ll need to keep the soil constantly moist, and the pot should be in a bright location that receives at least six hours of good sunlight per day.
“Chamomile is my favorite tea to drink, as it has a wonderful floral flavour. If you steep the tea longer, it will have a bitter flavour, which was traditionally used to help improve digestion,” says Daniel.
To make chamomile tea: “For every cup of water, you will need 1 tablespoon of dried chamomile or 2 tablespoons of fresh water,” says Tanya Anderson.
– Put the chamomile in the teapot, then pour boiling water over it, and leave it for only five minutes. “The dosage guide for adults is three cups a day, but if you’re over 70, drink half that,” she says.
Daniel holds a master’s degree in herbal medicine. As well as being the founder of the Botanical Institute, Daniel lives and works on a farm where he grows all kinds of herbs.
Sage, an evergreen Mediterranean herb, can be grown indoors, but the mistakes to avoid when growing herbs like sage indoors are ensuring it gets plenty of light. Sage needs a really sunny location and kept warm at around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. If you can’t guarantee plenty of light, you may need to boost them with an artificial grow light.
“They like good drainage, so it’s best to plant them in a clay pot and leave them to dry out between waterings,” says horticulturist Geraldine Sweeney.
As an herbal tea with earthy and woody aromas, sage is beloved for its cleansing and digestive-soothing properties.
Not only does sage make a delicious herbal tea, but it may also provide a variety of health benefits, Daniel Powers tells us. “A 2010 study by Yi & Wetzstein shows that sage contains high polyphenols and strong antioxidant capabilities, which may be useful as anti-inflammatory agents.”
“The herb is also known for its cognitive benefits, as shown in a study where sage extract showed significant improvement in short-term memory.” (Edwards et al., 2021)“Daniel says.
Sage tea can be made from fresh or dried leaves. “Pinch the leaves or snip some branches with sharp scissors. For a fresh drink, put two tablespoons of leaves in a cup and cover with boiling water,” says Fiona Cumberbatch.
“To dry them, hang the branches upside down in a cool place for about two weeks. Crumble them in an airtight container and seal them until ready to use.
Geraldine is a gardener and garden writer, who has worked for over 12 years in historic public gardens and private gardens across London.
“The bay is a little soft in an outdoor container, so it will love being inside over the winter,” says Geraldine Sweeney.
“They form a large plant, so they can’t be placed on a windowsill. Keep them in their own pot and make them a statement indoor plant. When growing herbs indoors it’s best to keep them in a sunny place with good ventilation,” she says. “Mist the leaves frequently and be careful.” pests such as scale insects.
To prepare bay leaf tea, place two or three bay leaves in a cup and pour boiling water over them. ‘Steep for about five minutes before removing. For an extra aromatic kick, add a cinnamon stick, says Fiona Cumberbatch.
An experienced freelance journalist, editor and columnist who writes for national magazines and websites, Fiona now specializes in gardens. She enjoys researching and writing about all types, from the smallest city plots to the impressively designed ones of grand country homes
“When it comes to how to make your own herbal tea, mint is one of the easiest herbs to grow and makes a classic herbal tea. Mint helps with digestion and can reduce symptoms of nausea too,” says Fiona Cumberbatch.
Unlike many herbs, when you grow mint indoors, it prefers rich, moist soil, but keep it at a temperature of 65-70 degrees Fahrenheit. Beware of mint because it is a widespread plant. It will spread and quickly cover any other weeds. So give it its own large pot, and avoid planting it with other herbs.
There are hundreds of different types of mint, including chocolate mint and pineapple mint, but the two main types are peppermint and spearmint. Peppermint is excellent for making tea, as it contains 40% menthol, which produces an intense, pungent flavor when steeped in water.
When mint is harvested, it becomes easy to prepare tea. Chop a handful of fresh leaves and put them in a teapot or cup. Fill with boiling water and let stand. “It can be sweetened as desired with sugar or honey,” says Fiona Cumberbatch.
5. Lemon verbena
‘Lemon verbena is an attractive, aromatic herb that can be easily grown from cuttings, making it an excellent value plant. “The truth is that it’s not quite as robust which makes it ideal for potting indoors,” says Geraldine Sweeney.
“Grow the herbs in a sunny spot and where you can comb them, that’s how they release notes of the zingy scent. Lemon verbena makes a refreshing herbal tea.
“It grows up to 7 feet tall in gardens, so cut back the stems to restrict growth if you don’t have enough space indoors. Keep it aerated and misted frequently to protect against red spider mites,” says Geraldine.
It is possible to grow hibiscus as a houseplant provided that it is kept away from drafts. It does not tolerate temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep it in the sunniest spot you can find indoors.
“Freshly tart and with a berry-like flavour, hibiscus is enjoyed as agua fresca in Mexico, and combined with spices in Jamaica. It is also traditionally combined with rosehip for a soothing cold tonic,” says Nadia de la Vega.
“Try it iced with cane sugar, or hot with ginger and spices,” she says. The flowers should be soaked in hot water until they are soaked.
How to dry herbs for tea
“For perennial herbaceous plants (which die in winter), drying them in summer means you can ensure a continuous supply of tea through the colder months,” says garden writer Fiona Cumberbatch.
“Pick the flowers or leaves in the late morning, when the dew has dried. Place them on a drying rack or hang them in an airing cupboard for a few weeks. When the herbs become brittle to the touch, store them in a clean, airtight container until ready to use.
How to harvest herbs for tea
“As a general rule for how to grow your own herbal tea, the leaves that get the most sunlight have the best flavour, because they contain the highest concentration of essential oils,” says garden writer Fiona Cumberbatch.
“Choose firm, blemish-free leaves, and snip them with sharp scissors. Tearing or crushing the leaves can subtly alter the flavour. If you use the plant’s leaves for tea, aim to do so before it blooms, because once the plant blooms, the foliage may taste bitter.” .’
You have now seen that growing your own plants does not have to be limited to allotments and vegetable patches. Why not take a look at the edible seeds you can grow to decorate your kitchen garden.