Hibiscus Zinger Herbal Tea $3.39 $3.69
Renee's Garden - This special herbal tea plant has attractive lobed leaves and creamy flowers. Once the pretty blossoms are spent, just pick and air dries the teardrop-shaped flower calyxes to make a delicious ruby-colored tea with a floral, berry aroma and well-balanced, cranberry-like flavor. Antioxidant-packed Hibiscus tea is delicious on its own either steaming hot or iced, or add a touch of lemon, a little honey, or your favorite fruit juice. Also called Jamaican tea or Roselle. Characteristics: Great in containers Ruby-colored herbal tea packed Packed with antioxidants Summer/Fall harvest Heat Loving/frost tender Instructions - In early spring, start seeds indoors 6 to 8 weeks before outdoor temperatures are reliably in the 50°F range. Sow seeds 1/2 inch deep and 1 inch apart in the seed starting mix. Keep very warm 75 to 80°F and moist but not soggy. Provide a strong light source. When 2 inches tall, transplant seedlings into individual 4-inch pots. Feed with a half-strength liquid fertilizer every 2 weeks until the weather is warm and nights stay above 55°F. Gradually acclimate seedlings to the outdoors. After flowers have finished blooming, harvest the deep-red, teardrop-shaped, calyxes at the base of each blossom. Snap off calyxes that are ready, removing spent flowers if still attached Use fresh, or air-dry for longer storage. Spread in a single layer on paper towels or cotton cloth for 7 to 10 days in a cool, dry place indoors out of heat and humidity. Store in an airtight container. Growing Notes: Hibiscus thrives in a sunny, very warm spot in rich and well-drained soil, so add compost or aged manure to the planting bed. Transplant seedlings 8 to 12 inches apart. Pinch tops when 10 inches tall to encourage a bushy, branching form. For containers, choose pots 18" in diameter and 16-18" tall Plant in April-May for cold winters; March for mild winters Full Sun Sow seeds 1" apart and 1/2" deep 7-10 days to germinate Mature Height: 2-3 feet Firefly Farm & Mercantile may substitute suppliers due to availability.
Thai Red Roselle Hibiscus, 1800's Heirloom Herb $3.75 $3.95
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange - Beautiful 3-5 ft. plants with red stems and leaf veins. The bright red calyxes can be used to make “zingy” tea, sauce, syrup, or jam, or candied whole for an unusual treat. For strongly flavored teas, simmer for 10-20 minutes. Roselle was called “Florida cranberry” in the 1890s. The flowers and young leaves are edible and have a citrus tang. The stir-fried greens are much used in Burmese cooking! Space plants 3-6 ft. apart – the wider the spacing, the more calyxes will ripen. The only variety in several trials to begin flowering by mid-summer here in Virginia. Small (0.6 g) packet has about 20 seeds. (Hibiscus sabdariffa) Characteristics: 3-5' tall and wide Zingy Flavor Easy to grow Approx 20 seeds Instructions - Frost-tender perennial. Germination: 75-85°F, 7-14 days. Transplant after last frost. Full sun. 36-60 in. tall. Firefly Farm & Mercantile may substitute suppliers due to availability.