Did you know that more than half of us drink at least a cup of tea a day? And if you are like me, then the daily number is much more than that! If we are all throwing our used tea leaves in the bin, that is a lot of needless waste added to landfill. If you have just enjoyed a wonderful cup of Harriet loose leaf tea you might be wondering what else you can do with your used leaves?
I came across this article on the Better Homes and Gardens website, https://www.bhg.com.au/ways-to-reuse-old-teabags-and-tea...which had some interesting and practical uses:
1. COMPOST YOUR LEAVES by adding them to your compost pile. They are rich in nitrogen, which balances the carbon rich materials.
2. ADD TO YOUR PLANTS Bury the leaves at the base of your plants. They will nourish the root system, aid in moisture retention and can suppress weed growth. Roses especially love acidic soil, and the tannin contained in tea leaves is very acidic. Azalias, camellias and hydrangeas also love them.
3. SOAK YOUR FEET Infused hot water with old leaves and soak your feet in the liquid. It can reduce foot odour, soften skin and reduce aches or pains.
4. GET RID OF BAD SMELLS Dry out your tea leaves and pop them in an open container, then sit the container where the odour is worst. you can do this to cupboards, fridges, and even shoes!
5. TENDERISE MEAT Steep old black leaves until a strong tea is created, then pour over meat just before cooking. The tannins in the tea will soften it.
Some fun alternatives can also be found at Life of Cha https://www.lifeofcha.com.au/blogs/news/ways-to-recycle-used-tea-leaves This includes placing damp tea leaves in a muslim bag, and laying them gently over your eyes. The antioxidants and anti-imflammatory properties in the tea help to relieve tired and sore eyes. Sounds perfect!
Whether your favourite cup of tea is white, green or black, your leaves will help you find a pause in your day, as well as taking care of our world!