Today I've harvested the Bee Balm and also taken the dried flowers, stems and leaves to make my Bergamot Tea! Come along and I'll show you how to make some for yourself! This is a good tea for colds & flu season that is just around the corner.
Bee Balm or Bergamot has been around for centuries and used in cooking and medicines.
The flowers of the Bee Balm are an attractive addition to salads. The leaves and red flowers are used in Oswego Tea. The use of the fresh or dried leaves are brewed into a refreshing aromatic and medicinal tea.
The entire plant above ground is used. Tea is made of the flower heads, petals, leaves and stems. Chopped fine and placed in a tea bag, tea ball or a coffee filter (gather edges and tie at top).
"Medicinal" Bergamot/Bee Balm Tea:
To 1 tsp. dried herb,
add 1 cup boiling water,
steep 10 min. sweeten to taste,
take at bedtime.
The red variety is commonly known as Oswego Tea. It was used by colonists in place of English Tea after the Boston Tea Party, when they threw the English tea in the harbor to protest the high taxes imposed on it by the British. And as we all know, this triggered the American Revolution between the United States and England.
An infusion is medicinal used internally in the treatment of colds, catarrh, headaches, and gastric disorders, to reduce low fevers and soothe sore throat, to relieve flatulence, nausea, menstrual pain, and insomnia. Steam inhalation of the plant can be used for sore throats, and bronchial catarrh (inflammation of the mucus membrane, causing an increased flow of mucus). Externally, it is a medicinal application for skin eruptions and infections. Bergamot’s wonderful aroma, found in both the leaf and flower is a delightful smelling addition for use in potpourri.
It is used as tea, or as an aromatic suitable for sachets and potpourri.
Monarda didyma, (red) (purple) Monarda fistulosa, (pink)Other Names: Eastern Beebalm, Bergamot, Wild Oswego Tea, Horsemint, Monarda, Wild Bergamot
This is a wonderful Herb! I love the tea and the pot pourri that can be made from the Bee Balm Flowers, leaves & stems! I hope you have learned a bit and will grow some Bee Balm or Bergamot in your garden next year!