A Garden Project: Make A Teapot Planter
Teapot Planter PlantsClick thumbnail to view full-size
Keep Fresh Tea Herbs Handy in a Teapot Planter
Reading about a tea garden made me realize that an adaptation on a teapot planter would make a great addition to my front yard. With my handy husband's help, we could make and install a cute but subtle ornament to the special pot.
A little research on what plants I wanted to include helped me get started and I was able to make a plan for my little teapot planter project.
My Patriotic Planter idea held the framework for putting a teapot planter together so I knew it would be an easy and fun project.
The idea of highlighting tea herbs in a pot was just too appealing for me not to do it, especially knowing that it would provide plenty of dried tea leaves for this winter's chills.
I hope to add photos of my teapot planter's harvest to this hub at the end of the summer so check back--I might invite you to tea!
Building a Tea Herb Garden in a Teapot Planter
Deciding what to put in it was a small conundrum because I like so many herbs that can be used for tea. First of all, I realized that stevia (also called Sweet Leaf) had to go in the middle.
These snappy, small leaved plants provide just the right amount of sweetener to teas and light-heartedness to a garden. Oh the astonishment and then the smiles on little faces when they try a stevia leaf (rinsed, of course) that they have picked from a garden.
Lemon balm was a requirement. For one thing, its coarse foliage adds a different texture to the look of the project, and anything lemon is a love of mine. This is a great herb to keep on hand for the trauma of cold season, and animals do not like it.
Drying its leaves at the end of summer for winter storage is a must do. Congestion can often be relieved by sipping this aromatic tea when suffering with the common cold. It’s also just plain comforting when one is feeling so miserable.
What else but mints would do next? A wild mint, a chocolate mint, and a pineapple mint were decided on, but with all the varieties available this was not an easy decision. Because of the size of my planter I had room for just one more herb...ouch. I decided on chamomile.
You might like to use an even larger planter, or stake out a spot for a big tea garden as opposed to a tea pot planter like mine. I like my planter, though, because it keeps my tea plants up and highlighted, away from cats and dogs, and I can move it around as I weed and rework my islands.
I used the same kind but next size up pot for this project as for my red, white, and blue project so they would match in my center island. A few rocks in the bottom, a little mulch to help with drainage, a little topsoil, then a good potting soil readied the pot for planting.
Now all I have to do is wait a few weeks for the plants to settle in and begin maturing. I will try to post an updated photo in the summer and show how it dies back in the winter.
Lemon Balm: An Antiviral Herb that is Good for Bees, and More
A Teacup for My Teapot Planter
As a decorative addition, my husband fixed a teacup to a piece of threaded rod by drilling a hole in the saucer and cup with a ceramic bit, then fixing them to the rod with washers and nuts.
I’ll be painting the nut and bolt inside the teacup with an outdoor paint. Birds may sometimes use it to drink from after it rains, but I won’t encourage them by keeping it full as I do not want their droppings on my herbs.
As the photo at the top of the hub shows, the teacup looks a little odd sticking out of the pot right now, but it won’t be long before the plants are taller and the cup is nestled among their leaves.
Keeping the plants trimmed by cutting and drying the leaves also means that the tea cup does not get lost in the foliage. Placing it on the side that has the plants with lower growing foliage helps spotlight it.
Do you grow your own tea herbs?
Growing the Herb Called Stevia (or Sweet Leaf) is Easy
Helpful Info for Growing Mint to Use for Tea with Stevia:
A Little Maintenance Goes a Long Way for Keeping a Teapot Planter's Herbs Fresh
Because teapot herbs are close together I will be keeping not only the foliage cut back but the roots. as well. I do not want them to blend into each other and lose their flavors. The method is sort of like bonsai for I will uproot them mid-summer to prune the roots and replant them.
As with all herbs, pinch off any flowers (depending on the herb you may even pinch the buds} before the plant goes to seed mid-summer in order to let it continue producing foliage for you to use and dry. Letting them go to seed at the end of the summer means that you will probably have new herbs coming up both inside and outside of your planter next spring. These can easily be transplanted or potted and given to friends as gifts.
There are many uses for the herbs that we have available today. This spring I already have a crop of lemon balm beside a bench that I wish I could share with all my readers! It’s great for more than teas. It adds flavor to meats, especially chicken and fish, and it does a good job of keeping pesky bugs away when I am gardening--just crush a leaf and rub it on the skin or stick a twig of it in a hat.
Check out the videos below for suggestions on growing tea herbs. Do some research to explore even more possibilities. You might be surprised at the various herbs that are used for medicinal teas, as well as those used for afternoons-with-friends tea time.
If you write a hub about your tea pot planter or garden spot please let me know so I can link it to this one. Don’t forget to post pictures of your herbs for us!
Super Tip for Bushy Herb Plants
Growing Stuff! :)
- Lovely Iris!
In honor of the iris, that honorable and dependable garden princess, here's a poem and a photographic montage.