If you like to taste of a nice cup of Spearmint Tea but are not sure how or when to trim the plant here is a little help.
Spearmint vs Peppermint
Spearmint has a pleasantly sweet taste and is frequently used to flavor toothpaste, mouthwash, chewing gum and candy. One common way to enjoy this herb is brewed into a tea, which can be made from either fresh or dried leaves.
Both spearmint and peppermint have menthol in them but peppermint contains a higher menthol content (40% versus .05% in spearmint) what makes its flavor much stronger than Spearmint.
Spearmint is commonly used to help relieve symptoms of indigestion, nausea, vomiting and gas. Fights Bacterial Infections and may lower Blood sugar and reduce Stress.
I just like the taste of fresh mint Tea but like to know that it also has some really important health effects.
Grow Spearmint Plants
Believe it or not you can grow Spearmint indoors as well as outdoors. The most important detail to grow Spearmint is to select a container with a wide surface rather than a deep one. Mint roots are runners and if they have the room, will set roots and sprout up new plants. I would also suggest to separate plants every 2 Years so they do not start choking themselves.
If growing in the garden make sure you have them in a place where you don’t mind them to take over that part of the Yard I have mine in one of my back Corners where nothing else will grow and the roots have extended in the yard so when we mow, the fresh mint smell spreads thru the entire backyard. ( love that smell and it keeps mosquitoes away )
Trim Mint Plant
You can harvest your Mint pretty much all Year around. Make sure you trim before they flower and during the morning when the menthol level is the highest.
Cut right above the Sprout so the new leaves will be able to grow and be ready for the next harvest
Pull the leaves down while harvesting and put them in a Strainer. You can also hang bushels of trimmings in a warm dark place to dry. I prefer the Strainer Method because the leaves are only touched once until they are muddled to tea.
Dry your Spearmint
Cover the leaves that you have in your strainer so they don’t turn brown or gray or attract other little critters. I like to keep mine on the patio when we have dry weather otherwise it goes to a dry place in the house.
It will take about a Week for the leaves to dry, you can check by turning the strainer upside down and when dry to touch the leaves are ready for storage.
Make sure you keep them in an air tight container so no moisture will get to your herb, it would start molding and that will make the Tea useless.
Spearmint Tea – health benefits for spearmint tea
Spearmint with its fresh, sweet flavor is used fresh in recipes and drinks. I love a good Mojito.
For me it is mostly used for Tea
Spearmint contains vitamins, antioxidants, and vital nutrients. The aroma is very similar to that of peppermint but it contains less menthol than peppermint, it is rich in limonene ( used to promote weight loss, prevent cancer, treat cancer, and treat bronchitis) , dihydrocarvone, and cineol and a sweeter taste than peppermint. You can drink it hot or cold.
My favorite recipe:
1 tbl spoon of dried mint
1 slice of Lemon
1 tbl spoon of Honey ( optional )
3 large Ice Cubes
put the mint leaves in a tea bag or tea egg, pour hot water of the leaves, add the slice of Lemon and honey, let sit for 3 minutes ( or longer for a stronger taste) cool of and pour over the Ice.
You can also make a large pot and let it cool overnight to enjoy the next hot Summer day.
It is refreshing and thirst quenching
Let me know how you are using your Spearmint.