Is Tea Good for Plants?

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Give tea to acid-loving azaleas to encourage healthy blooms.
Give tea to acid-loving azaleas to encourage healthy blooms. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

The brewing process for tea releases the leaves' essential oils, vitamins, minerals and flavonoids, which are compounds thought to have health benefits. Tea may benefit your garden or house plants. The same "brewing" process, using organic materials, also can help your plants, according to The Herb Companion magazine.

Method

Tea contains tannic acid, which is helpful if you're watering your plants with hard water. Hard water has a high salt content visible as a white residue on the sides of a flower pot. Over time, accumulated salts can burn plant leaves and may even kill the plant. Tannic acid neutralizes the hard water, correcting the pH.

Benefits

While all plants can benefit from the occasional splash of tea, tea also makes the soil more acidic. Hydrangeas, gardenias, and azaleas all prefer acidic soil and can benefit from regular applications of tea.

Teas for Plants

An organic liquid fertilizer is essentially a tea made for a plant. Some of these teas are made by mixing water with ingredients such as manure, alfalfa meal or concentrated fish stock. To make a simple manure tea, place a shovelful of well-aged manure into an old pillow case. Tie off the top and suspend it in a 5-gallon bucket of water for a week; dilute the steeped water and use it to water your plants.

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