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Mint grows in a garden bed.
Mint has a way of taking over a garden, so it’s nice to find new uses for this herb, such as mint tea.

Once again, my mint (peppermint) in my herb garden (I’ve nick-named it Godzilla) has literally taken over my bed. The spots of cool temperatures here and there have helped them grow a bit crazy even earlier this year than last.

When I had a larger brood of hens, I would use mint in their “fresh snack” a couple of times each week. But now that I’m down to three hens, I have a lot more mint (I also have lemon and spearmint varieties) that I’m not using.

Lucky for me, a friend I visit regularly introduced me to “homemade mint tea.” Every visit, she would have a pot ready and just a little spot of honey made the perfect cup. It wasn’t until after several visits that I asked the particular brand of mint tea she used…and to my surprise, it was mint she had dried from her herb garden steeped in hot water.

Perfect! Something I can do now with my mint clippings when “Godzilla mint” goes a little crazy.

Dry mint on brown paper to remove moisture.
I place my mint in a brown paper bag to remove the moisture and dry it for a few days for fresh mint tea from the garden.

I will say that I really enjoy good tea…My preference is black English tea (a proper pot, tea cup and saucer, Demerara sugar and cream to be exact), which I drink everyday. But there are several days a week that I enjoy herbal (mostly mint) tea because I don’t want the extra caffeine and the mint is really good for digestion and settling an uneasy stomach.

So, yesterday, for the first time ever, I clipped several mint stems from my garden, washed and dried them, and clipped the dead or imperfect leaves from the stems.  I then took a brown paper grocery bag and clipped the sides so that it opened long ways. I placed the clean, dry mint leaves on their stems on the paper bag and gently rolled them up inside the bag so that the moisture could be absorbed (hence the drying process) from the leaves. It should take a couple of days, and then I will de-stem them and store the dried mint in a cool, dry place for future use.

My preferences for making my own mint tea is that I don’t use any pesticides in my garden beds, so I know I have an organic tea. Also, the flavor really is a lighter, more pure taste (remember…this is simply my personal opinion).

You should check out the Bonnie Plants Growing Mint page if you would like tips on growing mint varieties. If you enjoy tea, I hope you will give making your own tea a try and see if you can taste the difference, too!

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