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Worth1 November 11, 2009 09:42 PM

Hibiscus expert HELP
Would someone tell me if you can make tea from the Lord Baltimore hibiscus?
Can you make tea from any hibiscus?
The stuff in the store is not pure; unless I go to Austin I can’t find pure hibiscus tea
I like to make my own iced tea with hibiscus and spearmint.
I have looked on the web till my face has turned blue, please help.
Desperate tea lover,:love:

tuttamatta November 12, 2009 01:19 AM

Hibiscus tea
Hi Worth,
I'm not sure that you can make tea out of any Hibiscus, I think it's a particular one and I know I purchased seeds in the past and still have them, I'll have to check my stash, but, in the meantime, if you are really desperate and you don't need to grow it yourself I would like to recommend a source (very reasonable and great, been ordering from them for a few years) I still have 1/2 lb in my pantry right now, as I love Hibiscus tea also:
You can order from them in "Botanical by the pound", I find the prices to be very reasonable, the only thing I don't like is the fact that they charge $ 10.00 extra until you reach a $ 40.00 order.
Check them out, I've ordered a lot from them.

Marko November 12, 2009 01:50 AM

I think you are looking for roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa). Seeds are available on ebay, just write "roselle" in search box.

puttgirl November 12, 2009 05:08 PM

I think you're right Marko, I believe it's the roselle. I HAVE read a couple places that hibiscus is edible, but it wasn't specific about the varieties so I'd only trust the roselle!

mjc November 12, 2009 05:52 PM

akgardengirl November 12, 2009 07:02 PM

From the comfort of your home, go to:
They sell all kinds of great herbs.
From one tea lover to another,

Worth1 November 12, 2009 09:22 PM

Thanks guys for the information.
I found one place that listed about 25 varieties that were edible leaves and all.

What I am looking for are plants I can grow as hibiscus does very well down here
In case some of you folks don’t know, Rose of Sharon is a hibiscus and from what
I have read it is on the edible list and grows way up north as well as down here.
I have read you can eat okra flowers as it is kin to hibiscus.

The warning I read most is that some plant retailers sell plants they call hibiscus but are not in the family.

(Hibiscus sabdariffa) is the variety most mentioned as the one to make tea from.

At this posting I have not found any member of the true mallow/hibiscus family that has a warning that it is poisonous.
It only states that you should consult a physician before using it as an herbal remedy.

More research is on the way as I see a gold mine with these flowers and their growing popularity with the so called hip/new age crowd.
I don’t care why or for what reason folks use this stuff I just like a good glass of tee.

Note; I eat rose flowers and hips right from the plant.
Sometimes people freak out when they see me pluck something from some strange plant and eat it.
They freak out more when I tell them not to mess with other plants because they will go on trip and they might not come back.

That’s why I am cautious about this hibiscus thing, you just never know from one plant to the next what will happen.:surprised:

Thanks again.

Worth1 November 12, 2009 11:47 PM

For anybody interested in herbs spices and what not the site that Sue AKA akgardengirl posted is the cat’s meow they have just about everything you need to set up shop.
Those lovely cobalt blue bottles and jars, the list goes on.
The shipping is just that, shipping, no hidden charges and the prices are good.

Thanks Sue :yes:


clara November 13, 2009 04:24 PM

Worth, in Egypt this sort of tea is called "Karkadeh" - I really love it! Everytime I spend my holidays there, I buy quite a lot to take it home and it's always gone much too early! Be careful when preparing the tea: Use hot water, not boiling water, and don't let the blossoms be in the water for more than 10 minutes, otherwise the tea will have a bitter taste.
Me, too, I'm thinking of growing Hibiscus sabdariffa to have this wonderful tea whenever I want. clara

habitat_gardener November 13, 2009 11:28 PM

speaking of the "hip/new age crowd": one of the most popular teas a while ago from Celestial Seasonings was Red Zinger, which had hibiscus as one of its main ingredients.

One of my favorites this time of year is nettle tea. It has a smooth flavor and is nutritious. I let it grow in my garden, then harvest and cook it when it starts to swallow the other plants. The nettle sting goes away after a bit of cooking, 10-15 minutes to be safe.

Wi-sunflower November 14, 2009 04:39 AM

I'm blanking on the name, but I believe the reddish-pink stuff sold in Mexican stores is hibiscus and is usually reasonably priced. It's often in a bulk bin near the bulk chiles.

Nettle is over running parts of my farm. For those that don't know, if you get stung by it, just rub some mud on the area and the sting goes away.


garnetmoth November 14, 2009 08:33 AM

i was just reading about roselle, and the tea is actually the fleshy calyx after the petals drop off, kinda like rose hips :-)

nolabelle June 15, 2013 10:48 AM

I grew hibiscus plants that I got from Home Depot to get the flowers as a treat for my iguanas. No matter where they were, they'd come running for hibiscus flowers. I also grew nasturtium to use both the flowers and leaves in salads. They have a wonderful peppery flavor. They're pretty too.

tlintx September 16, 2013 11:49 AM

I'm planning on adding two hibiscus plants to my garden -- Roselle (H. sabdariffa) and False Roselle (H. acetosella). Both are very ornamental and edible.

Also, Upton tea has dried hibiscus flowers in stock. Which is what got me thinking I should buy some seeds and start some Roselle (H. sabdariffa) soon for spring planting, because it apparently needs nine to ten months of growing time to really produce!

Ken B June 13, 2014 08:40 PM

Mother Earth News has had interesting stuff about how roselle is good for lowering blood pressure --

A neat thing about roselle is that you don't have to just wait til late in the season to harvest the calyxes -- you can also harvest the leaves and make tea from them too, or use them in salads. (Dunno if the leaves also have the lowering blood pressure quality, but they taste good!)

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