Thursday, May 19, 2011


Our extremely wet spring has certainly caused some problems here on the farm. Our spring garden has been one casualty, and now it looks like we can add our first cutting of hay to the list. Even so, there are a few things around here that are simply flourishing with all the extra moisture. Mint is one of them.

Mint is extremely easy to grow, and will spread and take over in just about any space. Give it a little sun and a wet area, and you can almost see it grow.  Our mint is planted near a ditch where it is welcome to cover the bank it is planted on.

I use a lot of mint fresh during the warm months, and I dry it for use over the winter. Mint is a delicious and different taste to use with roasted meats. It especially pairs well with lamb, but my favorite way to use mint is for tea.

There is not much that is more refreshing to me than sun brewed mint tea over a tall glass of ice. You can find a gallon of it in my refrigerator all summer long. It is so simple to make.

Peppermint Sun Tea
8 tea bags
a handful of peppermint
gallon of water

Put everything in a glass jar, and allow to sit in the sun. The time it takes to brew depends on your taste and the temperature outside, but it should take a least a few hours. I bring it in when it looks right. I remove the tea bags, but often just leave the peppermint in. We drink it unsweetened, but if you are a sweet tea fan dissolve some sugar in hot water to add to the tea. Serve in a nice tall glass over ice. 

Of course, if the sun is hiding, (as it has been most of this spring,) simply put a pot of water on the stove with the tea bags and mint. Bring it to a boil. Remove from heat. Strain into a gallon container and fill the container with cold water.

What is your favorite way to use mint?


  1. I like plain peppermint tea. No other kind of tea required. lol

  2. I absolutely love peppermint tea (also plain!). But don't have any mint growing in my yard. What I DO have is an abundance of lemon balm, which I ignored last year. However, according to the internet it makes a nice jelly (among other uses, including tea!) So, I think that might be my first canning of 2011 if the weather is rainy on sunday like it's expected to be. Thanks for the reminder to look into that!

  3. Friend of mine in central Oregon a few years ago was complaining that he didn't get any water through his irrigation ditch because of the wild mint. We spend all one weekend cutting it out, almost five wagon loads, next irrigation day he called me to come help sand bag the barn and the house and the chicken pen. He found out his land was shaped like a big bowl and guess where he built everything?

  4. I use it in tea as well. I tried extracting the fragrance but it was very weak. I've dried it and used it as a seasoning with chicken and pork. Our mint is mostly lemon mint.

  5. Sun and the solar power is wonderful energy that you could use in so many ways.From using it for heating your water for the house to making is all a great advantageous resource.

  6. I like to use mint for a ground cover plant. There are places in my yard that are not great for growing much of anything and some places that are too steep to mow.
    I plant mint and it does great - it spreads and it smells nice and it really helps cover all the bare yard areas.