Here’s a question for you! Have you ever asked, “what to do with used tea bags”? Do used tea bags have any uses in the garden?
What’s garbage in the kitchen can actually turn into treasure in your garden! Coffee grounds and tea bags are both famously brilliant when it comes to their unique uses.
Whether it’s from:
- A black tea bag
- Peppermint tea bag
- Iced tea bag
- Herbal tea bag
- Pu-erh tea bag
- Used lipton green tea bag
- … you can turn them into something beneficial in the garden.
Once done with your morning or afternoon tea, just place any of the tea bags from your cup into a clean storage container for later use.
Tea bags are especially versatile. If you ever asked yourself the above questions on used tea bags, it is time get your answers.
You can use the whole teabag or just the loose tea leaf inside, both have their uses in your garden environment or even in your house, when it comes to caring for your potted plants.
Using tea bags is not a miracle method, just an efficient and green way of caring for your garden a little better. Heavy tea drinkers, pay attention here are a few uses for tea bags!.
Can Teabags and Tea Leaves Be Composted?
Old tea bags and tea leaves are not only great for your seeds but they can actually serve as excellent organic fertilizers, provided that the bag itself is compostable. We already talked about their ability to hold water.
Thanks to composting tea bags, they will speed up the composting process, allowing you to use the compost much sooner.
This, however, can backfire. Tea bags made from polypropylene, unfortunately, will not decompose and you do more harm than good with this method.
How do you know of a used tea bag is compostable? If a tea bag is slippery, do not use the bags in compost.
A slippery material with heat-sealed edges will likely be polypropylene, and therefore not compostable. If it’s not polypropylene, you can use it because worms, bacteria and other microorganisms will break it down with relative ease, making your ground healthier more organic.
While helping out in constructing a compost pile, you can use Some gardeners use coffee filters in the bottom of their pots to keep the soil from running out.
But you can also place used tea bags in the bottom of a pot, covering the drainage holes or placing the bags on top of the drainage layer if you use one. The used tea bags will help keep roots moist and retain some water.
For Hair And Skin Application
A brewed strong tea may help the used tea bag serve another purpose. But after you brewed it for the second or the nth time, you can still use it on different parts of your body. After a nice cup of your leaf tea, ready your tea basket to hold your overused tea bags.
Used pre-brewed tea bags can become a deodorizing hand scrub. After working on smelly ingredients in your kitchen while having a cup of tea, you can just rub the used pre-brewed tea bags against your hands.
This will remove the scent of garlic, onions, ginger, and even fish! Whether you want to wash your hands with water or not, it will now depend on you.
Add warm water to the used leaf tea bag and soak your feet. The warm water and the remaining components in the dried leaves can neutralize bad foot odors, soften calluses, help heal wounds faster, and nourish your dry skin. Have a cup of tea while waiting for a few minutes.
Boil water and let it cool for a bit. This time, you’ll use the pre-brewed tea bags in an antioxidant bath. Whether it’s a weak tea or strong tea, used or not, the tea bags still contain a sufficient amount of antioxidants good for your skin.
Let the hot water produce brewed tea and include a fragrant tea like jasmine for additional aromatherapy effects.
Apart from the antioxidant content, the herbal components of teas also holds anti-inflammatory properties. It reduces inflammation that can heal razor burns, sunburned skin, stings, wounds, and bruises.
You can also use it to remove dark circles, relax your tired eyes, and free your exhausted body from discomfort. You may grab a cup of tea while trying to soothe your irritated skin.
Tea Bags In Gardens Helps Your Lawn
The quality of your lawn depends on multiple factors. The weather, where you live, the watering and even your garden’s very own eco-system!
What kind of trees and plants you have, how you take care of those, which insects you lure in with your everyday garden activity, anything and everything.
As a result, sometimes you have to deal with bald spots on your lawn. Replanting those spots with grass seeds is not always easy, as you can’t just dig up the ground and scatter them.
Thankfully, that doesn’t mean you cannot corrects the spots and that is where teabags come into the picture. Teabags are great because they can hold moisture.
Lawn Repair Tip:
Use tea bags to patch or repair bare spots in your lawn. Simply take a used teabag that is moist, place in on the spot and sow with grass seed. The teabag provides moisture and gradually over time will decompose. As an FYI, some gardeners soak their grass seed in liquid composted tea before sowing.
Try Used Tea Bags For Plants And Fertilizer
You can also “dig” teabags in the close vicinity to your plants, using them as fertilizer for plants.
This works because as the bags decompose, during this process they will emit nutrients such as nitrogen, making the close environment rich in nitrogen, which is key for your plants.
If it’s close to the roots, it’s even better.
This is a great method not just because it works, but also because it’s considered to be “green”, meaning it’s a sustainable way of helping your garden.
This alone probably does not reduce your carbon footprint on the planet, but it is definitely a step in the right direction.
Reusing Tea Bags On Plants In The Garden
Uses for old tea bags:
Make An Overnight “Tea Brew” For Acid Loving Plants
Some teas contain adequate acid levels. Black tea, white tea, green tea, and oolong tea contain tea tannic acid.
This phenolic flavor compounds or tannins give some drinking teas an astringent and slightly bitter taste. You can set the used tea bags aside and give the brewed tea to invigorate some plants.
Tannins, used to tan leather and other products, also make a great addition if added to the soil or compost pile in the form of tea grounds. Tannins help convert the soil to become an ideal place for acid-loving plants.
Organic Control For Root Maggots
Some maggots and worms have positive benefits. In fact, some of them are crucial to your garden’s eco-system. There are some, however, that don’t really do any good.
In fact, they make matters worse. For them, teabags can be a discouraging factor. It doesn’t work for all types pests though. I believe it’s the tannic acid in tea that sends them packing!
Still, since it’s good for the plant anyway (we talked about the nitrogen rich ground), it doesn’t hurt to try it and bury them near the roots of your plants or as we said in your compost.
Make sure you don’t hurt the root though, it’s ideal to do this process slowly, so you can see the roots before it would be too late.
Related: Are Coffee Grounds Good For Lawns?
Dry Tea Bags Out And Create Plant Enrichment
You can also dry the teabags out and take out the leaves if they are not compostable, or crush (maybe blend) them. The next step is adding some chelated iron for plants into the mixture.
The best delivery method for this is a crushed iron pill. You can get iron pills at your local pharmacy. Crush them into powder.
The next step is to mix the iron powder with the tea leaves before adding water to them. Once you added the water (around 500 ml or 17 fl oz), let it sit a little until all the stuff dissolves.
It’s usually enough to wait around 4 or 5 minutes and you are good to go. The last step is using the mixture.
This is very easy, all you have to is simply pour the mixture onto the soil. It can be a potted plant or anything in your garden you feel would deserve a little boost.
After a few weeks and the plants have “taken up” the tea/iron mixture, then you should see increased vigor, flowering quicker, and more along with just being more healthy overall.