Greek mountain tea, also known as shepherd tea, has been drunk in Greece for centuries. Depending on the region it is made from one of the 150 different species of the plant Sideritis.
Our Greek mountain tea is from the Rhodopen mountains in northern Greece. The Rhodopen are a karst mountains and rich in flora and fauna. The cistus plant, oregano and the Sideritis scardica, better known as the Greek mountain tea, grows on the clear slopes.
In the past, mountain farmers collected the mountain tea directly in the wild. Since the plant is now under protection, the mountain farmers have begun to collect only the seeds of the wild plant of mountain tea. From thoes seeds, controled by the Institute of Agriculture of the University of Thessaloniki, are seedlings grown. This has the advantage that despite cultivation, a high level of biodiversity is guaranteed.
The wild-seed-grown plants are placed in the prepared and organic-cultivated soil after a three-month growth period. But then it takes another two years until the plants in the lean karst soil have developed sufficient root system. Only in the 3rd year of the mountain tea starts to flower and can be harvested for another five years.
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