Have you ever thought about the value of a tea leaf after you have enjoyed your cup of tea?
Turns out a tea leaf’s value is just beginning! Try some of these practices to extract even more great benefits from you leaves.
In the kitchen:
- Place a small dish of USED tea leaves in the refrigerator to keep it smelling fresh. Works significantly better than baking soda. The counter to this is to remember tea absorbs odors and doesn’t discriminate, so DO NOT store your dry tea leaf in the refrigerator or you will have a tea that tastes like it’s contents.
- Wipe cutting boards, frying pans, woks and cooking utensils with used leaves to clean. Detergents will clean, but also remove time-honored seasoning.
- Rubbing used leaves between your hands will remove onion odor from your skin and will also hydrate and soften your hands, keeping cuticle and nails beautiful.
The tannin contained in green tea reacts with irons and forms a film on the surface. By wiping iron pans or garden tools with used tea leaves the worry of rust is gone!
Clean your home:
- Spread well-drained used leaves on hard surface floors and then simply sweep clean. It is common to see Chinese restaurants using this trick to clean oils from the kitchen floor.
- Place used leaves in a tightly tied clean rag and use to polish your wood furniture. The luster will amaze you with no sticky oil remaining on the surface.
Keep shoes fresh and odor free:
Tea’s anti-bacterial affects makes it a perfect choice for your shoes. Dry leaves by roasting in a pan, then wrap them in a piece of gauze to tuck into an old clean sock. Place the very dry leaves in your shoe closet or right into gym shoes for extra smelly relief.
Once you have lots and lots of used tea leaves you can. . .
Make Pillows: Small ones for your eyes, full ones to provide you with the most relaxing sleep ever. Simple dry the leaves as you go along and store in a cloth bag, or old pillow case to allow them to continue to dry fully as you accumulate. Once you have enough you can either sew a bag for them to go into your pillow case, or use two pillow cases with opposite openings. You can really be creative with this too by adding in things like, lavender, chamomile, rosemary and other dried plants that evoke a relaxing emotion for you. I have even used uncooked rice with tea leaves to create a small eye and sinus relief pillow. Once your friends and family know about this, your list will be long with specials requests!
Great in the garden too:
- Of course we can compost with tea leaves, but did you know adding leaves at the base of your roses helps with pesky pests?
- Your acid loving plants will bloom even longer with a nice big pile of used leaves worked into the soil around them.
Steeping loose leaf tea is very easy once you know just a few simple tricks and the benefits compared to using a teabag are many.
I believe the benefit and value of tea ALL tea is simply amazing! I can think of no other single plant that has contributed so positively to mankind for as long or in as many ways. Weather you are consuming tea for the numerous health benefits, eating tea for new and different experiences or using tea to enrich your spiritual practices I encourage you to consider forgoing the ease of teabags in favor of the wide world of loose. You will not only have a nicer cup of tea you will then have all the added value of the precious tea leaf beyond the beverage.
How do you use your spent tea leaves? Drop a line below and lets share more ideas.