Growing Hibiscus

Reader Contribution by Faithful Homesteader
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When we attended the Mother Earth News fair this past year, we picked up some seeds from one of the many vendors. One of the things that I was most looking forward to was the hibiscus seeds. I wanted them for the beautiful flowers. I also liked the idea of making our own tea.

We planted them in the spring with our other crops and waited the whole summer for something to happen. The plant had grown quite tall, but no signs of the flowers that I was anxious to see. Finally, we saw the plant filled with what would soon become beautiful flowers. I was ready.

One morning when I was trying to catch some extra sleep, my husband came and woke me up. He wanted to make sure that I could see the flowers while they were blooming. I didn’t know that I would only see them for a portion of the day before they would close up and fall to the ground. I immediately grabbed my camera so I could mark the occasion. The flowers were not quite as bright or pink as we anticipated, but they were still beautiful.

Now every morning more flowers bloom. It is something to look forward to each day. We have been gathering them up daily. Our plan has been to use them to brew our very own tea. However, someone reached out to us with the information that we should be using the dark red seedpods because that is what has the flavor. I am kind of excited about the idea of making our own tea because it is a new experience.

My husband says that on its own, hibiscus does not have much flavor. Perhaps we just haven’t had the good stuff yet. We may end up coming up with our own blend of something to enhance the flavor of the tea. I wonder how it might be with some peppermint mixed with it.

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