Saturday, January 9, 2010

Lemongrass and herbal teas

The asparagus is tipping over and although I have read that you should not disturb the roots I did put in a few small stakes to support them.  I have stopped harvesting them in order to build the plants up for next years harvest. These were only two year old plants this year. I also cut some lemongrass and used it as mulch around the base -I think it keeps bugs at bay and also it smells divine. 
The lemongrass was running a bit rampant and needed cutting back, so I coarsely chopped some of the stems to dry and make tea.  I am not sure if you are supposed to use the stems or the leaves for tea, but I think the stems are more flavourful - at least that is what you use for cooking.  Anyway this time I had used all the leaves for mulch!  I often use a lemongrass stick in my regular tea as a stirrer and it imparts a lovely flavour.

 That got me going, and soon I was cutting back the spearmint, chocolate mint, stevia and even a few hibiscus leaves and kaffir lime leaves. I have never dried leaves for tea before, so this is a first.  It is so humid that I am not sure the leaves will dry out that well.  When it is raining I will keep them inside where we run the aircon in the evenings. 
Otherwise they will go outside in the sun. I have this nifty net cover to keep the bugs off. I actually bought a couple of them when we were passing through Hong Kong, only to find that you could get them in the dollar store here! It fold up like an umbrella for storage.
I am drying everything separately and will mix them when I brew them.


  1. Lemongrass gets killed back by the cold here, to resprout in the spring. I pot up a clump for the greenhouse because the cat and dog love to chew the stems.

  2. africanaussie,
    It is amazing how many plants can be used for healing purposes. I used to make Dandelion tea when I lived up in Nothern Florida. Most folks there considered it an invasive weed but most all of the plant was edible as a green or to make tea or even wine.I put the leaves in a basket over the refrigerator to dry them out.

  3. Sanddune,
    Yes my leaves are already dried - it rained so much over the weekend that they never got outside. What is dandelion tea used for?

  4. NellJean, that is great that you can save some to plant out each year. I think it loves this climate - I keep having to cut it back!

  5. africanaussie,
    Check out
    It has recipes and more facts than you probably want to know.


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