How to Grow Your Own Tea Garden will show you how easy it is to have the ingredients for your favorite teas just outside your door. Who knew it would be so easy?
“Tea makes everything better.”Bindi Irwin
Not only will growing your herbal and floral teas save you money, but most of the plants will make your yard even more beautiful.
Let’s get real for a moment, shall we? Life is hard. And messy. It’s anything but perfect.
But…having a tea garden in your backyard makes things just a wee bit better don’t you think?
Your cat vomits on the carpet…have a cup of raspberry tea to calm your nerves.
You found out tonight you’re supposed to bring brownies to your child’s classroom in the morning…a spot of mint tea will add a pep in your step as you burn the midnight oil.
Let’s face that fact that having a tea garden in your yard ups your “hip” factor by a few notches with the home-loving crowd. They will look at you a little different. Maybe even in awe.
I have a blogging buddy that has two alpacas. It doesn’t matter what’s going on in her life, she’s got the cool aura because of her fur babies.
Plus…I think we automatically want to get to know someone who has alpacas. They’re “our kind” of people.
The same goes for tea garden growers. You add a little mystery to your life.
People really start wondering new things about you
- “I wonder if she wears a big, fancy hat when she drinks tea?”
- “What other type of cool activities does she do that I don’t know anything about?”
- “Does she buy her clothing from a store, or did she make everything herself?”
- “Am I exciting enough to hang out with a person that grows their own tea?”
It’s life-changing. At least, in my humble opinion.
As an extra bonus, after you have a season or two under your belt – you get to be a tea-tasting expert.
Let’s stop talking about growing a tea garden, it’s time to start planning.
Can you grow tea at home?
Yes you can. Lots of different types of tea garden plants can be grown in your own yard.
What can I plant in a tea garden?
This is the question I get all the time in my groups. Most people think of green tea leaves or black leaf tea, but think of all the herbal teas you buy.
Your tea garden isn’t limited to actual tea plants, there’s a whole other world of plants to pick from. This list of tea garden plants will help you get started.
Are tea plants perennial?
It depends on the type of plants you pick. Below is a list of tea plants that I recommend and it will list if it is a perennial or annual.
Your garden will transform into a place that will end up nourishing your soul and hydrating your body.
How your tea garden can produce the most beautiful gifts:
Find gifts for friends and family can be hard. When you create a tea garden it’s easy.
Why should you be the only one having all the fun? For a gift, start with a gift basket, add some shredded paper, a teacup and saucer or mug, this amazing book that will get them started on their tea garden journey, and a couple of small plant starts from your garden in clay pots.
Keep in mind if you grow mint, you will always be “gifting” everyone you meet with some. They will think you’re a thoughtful, wonderful person.
You’ll just want to find someone that will take some off your hands. Anyone is a target. Same with zucchini – but that’s another post.
Doesn’t that make a fun gift to give?
Creating a Cozy Life Group:
Since you love to garden and drink tea, I’m guessing you like all things cozy living. I created a Facebook group called Creating a Cozy Life with over 117,000 like-minded souls.
It’s a group where we share recipes, pictures of things that leave you in awe, and ideas on how to make your life just a little bit more snug. Join here to be part of the virtual cozy cabin.
Note: This post is long-winded, so make yourself a cup of tea and take the time to enjoy it!
Here’s how to How to Grow Your Own Tea Garden
Tea Plant Idea #1 – Chamomile
Growing chamomile in your tea garden
We all know that chamomile tea helps us sleep at night, but did you also know it helps relieve stress?
It boosts immunity, eases cold symptoms, and soothes stomach aches. The flowers are gorgeous, so they add loveliness to any garden. The flowers are what you use to make your own tea.
Are chamomile plants easy to grow?
Yes, chamomile is an easy plant to grow, whether you grow Roman or German chamomile.
What are the best conditions to grow chamomile plants?
Roman chamomile is a perennial and can be grown from an established plant or by seed. German chamomile is an annual, but it self-sows.
It is an easy herb to grow and can be grown in part shade or full sun, preferring cool conditions.
It likes dry soil and doesn’t require much care. USDA Plant Hardiness zones 3-9.
What companion plants go best with chamomile plants?
Bee balm, Phlox, and Delphiniums are just some of the plants that pair well with chamomile. Delphiniums are simply dreamy, don’t you think?
Tea Garden Plant Idea #2 – Mint
Growing mint in your tea garden
Who doesn’t love mint tea? There are so many different flavors of mint; the problem will be deciding what kind to plant. Peppermint, spearmint, apple mint, chocolate peppermint, or even Moroccan mint are just a few of the types of plants to pick from.
The best mint to grow for tea is finding out what flavor you like.
Don’t forget to keep mint contained, once planted it tends to take over the garden. I like to keep my mint in large ceramic pots.
Are mint plants easy to grow?
Yes, mint is crazy easy to grow and is a perennial. There are just a few tips and tricks you should know before growing this amazing herb.
What are the best conditions to grow mint plants?
They do well in both shade and sun, with soil that has good drainage. Minimal care is needed to grow this amazing herb. USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 3-11 depending on what type of mint you grow.
What are the best companion plants for mint?
It’s best to keep mint contained by itself. You can do this with pots or only planting it in a section of the garden.
If you would like to read more about growing mint, How to Grow a Mint Garden will give you some insight on this amazing herb.
Here are more articles on mint:
Tea Plant Idea #3 – Roses
Growing roses in your tea garden
The taste and aroma of rose tea are heavenly. Rose leaves, buds, petals, and rose hips can all be used in making tea.
Most roses are edible, but there are some that are better suited for use in food and drink. You obviously wouldn’t want to add pesticides to your roses, so make sure you only use organic gardening methods.
When choosing which roses to grow, pick ones that have a pleasing scent. Old-fashioned fragrant heirloom roses work well. Yellow and pink roses usually have the most flavor and fragrance. Make sure you cut off the white part of the petal before using, it can cause a bitter taste.
Are roses easy to grow?
Roses are hardy plants and are pretty easy to grow. Some types of roses are more difficult to grow than others.
For more information on growing roses, check out my article on 31 Secrets to Growing Roses.
What are the best conditions to grow roses?
Most roses need at least six hours of sun every day, so picking the right spot to plant them is important. Make sure they’re in well-draining soil and add 2-3 inches of organic mulch around the plants. Check regularly for disease or insects and prune regularly.
What type of companion plants go best with roses?
Lavender goes beautifully with roses.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #4 – Elderberries
Growing elderberries in your tea garden
Elderberry trees produce both edible flowers and delicious fruits. The berries contain more vitamin C than oranges and are used to help boost the immune system.
Native to North America, elderberry trees can be found growing wild. The American Elderberry can grow up to 12 feet tall and wide. The plants start producing berries when they are two to three years old.
If you can’t use all the elderberries produced by your tree, don’t worry they’re a favorite food of birds so they will never go to waste.
Always make sure you cook elderberries, uncooked elderberries can cause a toxic build-up of cyanide if you eat too many.
Are elderberries easy to grow?
They are one of the easiest shrubs to grow. I had them springing up all over my yard on their own.
What are the best conditions to grow elderberries?
They love moist, well-drained soil and plenty of sunshine.
What companion plants are best with elderberries?
Winterberries go well with elderberries.
Tea Plant Idea #5 – Milk Thistle
Growing milk thistle in your tea garden
Sometimes what one considers a weed, another person looks at it much differently. Milk thistle is a herb that has anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties. It’s also filled with antioxidants.
Make sure its okay to grow milk thistle in your state. In some states, its considered a noxious weed and it is illegal to buy or sell plants. You can find milk thistle seeds here on Amazon.
Is milk thistle easy to grow?
Yes, too easy. Please note that milk thistle can be quite invasive, so make sure you plant it in a contained environment like pots.
What are the best conditions to grow milk thistle?
It likes sunny or lightly shaded areas.
What companion plants go best with milk thistle?
Milk thistle should be all by itself in a container or a sectioned off piece of garden.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #6 – Lavender
Growing lavender in your tea garden.
I love anything lavender. Lavender tea is simply divine. It also reduces anxiety and stress and helps with insomnia.
Are lavender plants easy to grow?
Yes, they are relatively easy to grow.
What are the best conditions to grow lavender plants?
The plants need at least six hours a day and like a well-drained soil or raised beds. Don’t over water and make sure they have good air flow around the plants.
What companion plants go best with lavender?
Lavender pairs well with roses and echinacea.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #7 – Lemon Balm
Growing lemon balm in your garden.
Aiding with both insomnia and anxiety, lemon balm is a tea that will make you happy camper.
Part of the mint family, lemon balm looks like mint but smells like lemons.
Is lemon balm easy to grow?
It is very easy to grow. Lemon balm is easily propagated by plant divisions, cuttings or seeds.
What are the best conditions to grow lemon balm?
Plant lemon balm in well-drained soil where it will have some shade in the day. It can be invasive, so make sure to remove the flowers as soon as they appear to control growth. (Most mint expand by their roots, lemon balm spreads throughout the garden with their seeds.)
It does best in full-sun, but also grows in part shade. It’s an easy herb to grow.
Herbal Tea Gardens says to make sure and pick the leaves early in the day and without set flower beds.
What companion plants go best with lemon balm?
Echinacea and chamomile go well with lemon balm.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #8 – Ginger
Growing ginger in your tea garden.
Ginger tea is so good for you. It helps reduce inflammation, improves blood circulation, relieves nausea and helps relieve stress.
Growing ginger root sounds like it would be hard, but with a couple of tips, its pretty easy. It loves filtered sunlight, a rich moist soil, warm weather, and humidity.
Are ginger plants easy to grow?
Yes, even though ginger is a tropical plant, you can easily grow it in your own backyard.
What are the best conditions to grow ginger?
Most ginger plants do best in a sheltered spot, filtered sunlight and moist soil.
What companion plants go best with ginger?
Hibiscus is the perfect companion to ginger.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #9 – Raspberry Leaf
9) Growing raspberry Leaf in your tea garden.
Raspberry leaf tea boosts the immune system, increases metabolism, helps regulate hormones, helps ease the symptoms of colds and flu and helps with inflammation. This tea is simply made from the leaves of raspberries by drying and crushing the leaves.
Are raspberry plants easy to grow?
Yes, raspberry bushes are a perennial and are pretty easy to grow.
What are the best conditions to grow raspberry bushes?
Make sure you pick the right plant type for your region. Raspberries love a good trellising system, love a good deep rich soil that drains well and has a PH soil of 6.0.
What companion plants go best with raspberry bushes?
Chamomile and Nasturtiums pair well with raspberry bushes.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #10 – Dandelions
Growing dandelions in your tea garden.
Who knew that dandelions would end up being something we would want to grow?
These amazing plants pack a powerful nutritional punch. They are said to help stimulate the gallbladder and liver. It also helps reduce water weight.
They grow in sun, partial sun and shade. The leaves and root are used in the tea.
Make sure you gather the leaves when they are tender and young. The older leaves can be more bitter.
Are dandelion plants easy to grow?
I think we all know the answer to this question. A big YES! I’m an expert-level dandelion grower. I always chuckle when I see dandelion leaves being sold in the grocery store.
What are the best conditions go grow dandelion plants for tea gardens?
This plant is perfect for gardeners sporting a black thumb. They tolerate different soil types and amounts of sunlight.
What companion plants go best with dandelions?
Dandelions are great to plant near flowering fruits and vegetables because they attract pollinators. Strawberries and raspberries are just two of the plants you should pair with dandelions.
Tea Plants Idea #11 – Echinacea
Growing echinacea in your tea garden.
We all have heard how wonderful echinacea is for our health. But how many of us are growing it for our tea?
It is said to assist in helping the immune system. It may also reduce cold and flu symptoms.
It is a perennial plant, so it will keep on giving it’s health benefits year after year.
You use the root from plants that are two or three years old.
Are echinacea plants easy to grow?
Yes, they are easy to grow from seeds, plants, and through division. Echinacea plants are known throughout the gardening world as a low-maintenance plant.
Make sure you deadhead the florets for optimal growth.
What are the best conditions go grow echinacea plants?
Echinacea plants grow best in full to partial sun. They don’t like wet soil, so make sure you plant in a well-draining patch of the garden.
Keep in mine that echinacea plants are clumping plants, so make sure they have at least 18 inches between other plants.
What companion plants go best with echinacea plants?
Echinaceas pairs well with sage, Catmint, and Geraniums.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #12 – Strawberry Leaf
Growing strawberry leaf in your outdoor tea garden.
Strawberries should be one of your first things to plant. Not only can you enjoy the delicious fruit from the plant, but you use the strawberry leaves in your tea.
The leaves are said to help with joint pain.
Are strawberry plants easy to grow?
Strawberries are relatively easy to grow as long as they have full sun and are properly taken care of.
What are the best conditions to grow strawberry plants?
The strawberry plant is a perennial and prefers to grow in full sun. It will still grow in shady areas, but the plants won’t produce as much as a sunny area will. You need to have at least six hours of sun.
You definitely want well-draining soil. Make sure you keep them watered throughout summer due to their shallow roots.
Planting strawberries at least 18-20″ apart to leave room for runners is optimal.
What companion plants are best to grow with strawberry plants?
Thyme is a good companion plant with strawberries.
Tea Garden Plant Idea #13 – Thyme
Growing thyme plants in your tea garden.
In my original post, I forgot to include thyme as one of my must-haves in a tea garden. Why? Because I drink it all the time – somehow it slipped my mind.
A reader wrote in and suggested adding it, and it floored me that I overlooked such a vital part of my everyday life.
I love thyme tea. It definitely has an unique flavor, so you don’t like thyme added to food – you’re probably not going to like thyme tea.
Personally, I think it tastes amazing. I drink it with raw honey and lemon. This is also my go-to tea when I have a cold or cough, in addition to my ginger lemon tea.
There are over 300 different varieties of thyme. Thyme is in the mint family. Now it’s just figuring out the type you want to grow.
You’re also going to want to plant enough thyme to let it flower. Bees love thyme and we want to keep our flying friends happy, don’t we?
Are thyme plants easy to grow?
Yes, they are. Thyme can be difficult to grow from seed, so it’s best to buy a few plants and propagate them throughout your garden.
What are the best conditions to grow thyme?
Thyme need space, sunlight, and well-draining soil to thrive. They are also good container plants, just make sure they have plenty of sunlight.
Each variety of thyme requires different spacing. It varies between 12-24 inches apart.
What companion plants go best with thyme?
Rosemary is the best herb to plant alongside thyme, because they have same watering and sunlight needs. Strawberries are also a good plant to grow next to thyme.
Tea Plants Idea #14 – Hibiscus
Growing hibiscus flowers in your tea garden.
Not only does hibiscus flowers make an amazing tea, they add such a pop of color to your garden. Gorgeous large red blooms will add beauty and elegance to any yard.
There are two different main types of hibiscus: hardy hibiscus and tropical hibiscus. Tropical hibiscus are fussy plants that are usually grown indoors, while hardy hibiscus are typically grown outside.
Over 200 different species of hibiscus exist, but the one that is used most frequently for tea is hibiscus sabdariffa. You can find organic hibiscus sabdariffa seeds on Amazon here.
Are hibiscus plants easy to grow?
Hibiscus are easy to grow as long as you provide the right conditions. Hardy hibiscus plants are a perennial and considered hardy. You want to make sure you prune your hibiscus every spring.
What are the best conditions to grow hibiscus plants?
They love full sun and a well-drained soil and can be grown in containers as well. You want to make sure you keep the soil evenly moist.
What companion plants go best with hibiscus plants?
Dwarf lavender plants are the perfect companion plant to go with hibiscus. They both love sun!
Tips for making your own tea at home:
1) Make sure you harvest your herbs before they flower. If you wait too long, they may turn bitter or lose their flavor.
2) Cut herbs mid-morning. You want to make sure the morning dew has dried from the leaves.
3) The best way to dry herbs is to air dry them. By using this slow method, you keep the oils in-tact. Tie small bunches of herbs upside down for a week or two, depending on your drying conditions. Drying is complete when the stems break easily, and the leaves crumble when crushed. Store herbs in airtight containers and label them. Keep them away from the sun and store them in a dry area. They usually keep for a year. You can also use a dehydrator to dry your herbs. I love my Excalibur dehydrator, you can find one here.
If you’re a tea enthusiast and a homesteader or gardener interested in growing your tea, Homegrown Tea: An Illustrated Guide to Planting, Harvesting and Blending Teas and Tisanes by Cassie Liversidge. It has beautiful illustrations for each type of tea, along with instructions on how to harvest, dry and make each one featured. Click here to read reviews and buy it on Amazon now.
Here’s a Few Resources on Creating Your Own Tea Garden Blends:
Resources on Preparing and Amending Your Soil for a Herb Garden:
Here’s Some Ideas on How to Design Your Herb Garden:
More Resources on How to Grow A Tea Garden:
The first half of the book gives a description of all the different herb plants to grow. The second part of the book outlines garden plans.
Here’s the garden plans outlined:
Cough, Cold and Flu Garden
Tummy Care Garden
Headache Relief Garden
Sleepy Time Garden
Women’s Care Garden
Bladder Care Garden
Arthritis Care Garden
Pain Relief Garden
Immunity Booster Garden
Liver Care Garden
Kidney Care Garden
Heart Care Garden
We’ve reached the end of How to Grow a Tea Garden. I hope you enjoyed it.
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