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Hi Everyone -
I'm so glad you've joined me in the fun and yummy world of growing your own herbal tea!
Whenever I visit a website or blog for the first time, I'm always curious about the person "behind the scenes".
Just in case you're one of those curious types, too, here's a little bit about me and my website, DIY Herbal Tea.
For as long as I can remember, I've loved diggin' in the dirt and growing things!
Some of my earliest memories are of puttering in the garden with my Nana (my gardening guru) when I was 2 or 3 years old.
With my own little trowel, garden rake, and watering can, I was happy as can be, side-by-side with Nana, "helping" her dig, plant and water her garden.
I'd watch with fascination as her flowers grew and blossomed. And all by myself, she'd let me pick mint for her iced tea!
When it was time to harvest strawberries and rhubarb, I was there to help - and to taste the first bite of Nana's amazing homemade pies!
At that tender age, I suspect I was more hindrance than help to Nana. Bless her heart, she was a very patient woman! ;-)
Fast-forward a few years ...
I was about 5 years old when my gardening talents (actually, my gardening luck ) first came to light in what I now fondly refer to as "The Geranium Incident".
One spring weekend, Nana and Gramps took me along on their outing to our local garden center. There, on the ground in the parking lot, I found a wilted red geranium flower.
I picked the flower up and carried with me around the store while Nana and Gramps shopped. At check-out time, Mr. Palazzi, the store owner, smiled at my find and told me to enjoy my flower. Enjoy it I did!
Did I put the flower in a vase of water on my bedside table? Or course not. Even way back then, I rarely did anything the "normal" way.
Instead, while Nana was planting her new flowers, I planted mine, too. Yep, I poked my finger into the dirt, made a hole, planted the stem, and watered it in like a good little gardener. ;-)
Looking back on it now, I can only imagine Nana's shock when, several weeks later, she discovered that my once-pitiful, half-dead little geranium flower had taken root and was growing new leaves!
As autumn was coming on, we potted up my new plant and brought it indoors. I can't recall exactly how long we had that geranium. But I know it was years. :-)
Encouraged by the "The Geranium Incident" - and by Nana - my passion for growing things blossomed. (Yes, pun intended!)
When I was 11 years old, my passion was growing pumpkins. My neighborhood friends and I had a fine time making homegrown Jack-o-Lanterns for Halloween!
In my teens, after seeing fields of cotton on a driving trip to Florida, I tried my hand at growing cotton. (Hint: Cotton does not grow well in the northeastern US!)
Now, as an adult, I'm still experimenting in my garden, always looking for something new and different to grow. Sometimes successfully, sometimes not so much. For me, it's always a great adventure!
My fascination with growing herbal teas began innocently enough - with a free packet of german chamomile seeds that came with a new gardening magazine.
One morning I looked at the seed packet sitting on my kitchen counter and thought, "Hmmmm. I should probably plant these." So I did. And they grew. Like crazy!
My next thought was, "Hmmmm. Maybe I should try making chamomile tea". So I did. And I liked it. Alot!
Since then, my herbal tea garden has expanded from one patch of chamomile in my flower garden to 10 different tea herbs - everything from my must-have chamomile, to a variety of mints, to unique tea herbs like bee balm and anise hyssop.
To sweeten my teas naturally, sans calories, I grow my own stevia, too.
My herbs are like my little buddies. They're super-simple to grow, so they don't demand a lot of my time. And they reward me nicely!
After a busy day, there's nothing quite like coming home to a refreshing glass of homegrown lemongrass iced tea, or having a cup of soothing chamomile tea before bed!
During the highs and lows of day-to-day life, Nana was always there for me with a listening ear, wise advise ... and a lovely cup of tea.
Sadly, Nana has passed away. But her love of gardening and her love of a tasty "cuppa" lives on in me.
My DIY Herbal Tea website is a tribute to my Nana ~ and my way of sharing the delicious pleasures of herbal tea gardening with all of you.
Grow ~ Brew ~ Enjoy!!