Red Dragon Mini Farm, located in Boonsboro, MD started when we, the Martucci family, made our escape from suburbia in search of a simpler life, healthier food, and a stronger community. We soon found that the extra space afforded us the opportunity to grow more herbs including peppermint, lemon balm, rosemary, and raspberry leaves which we could then use to make our own herbal teas. We also noticed as we shopped the local farmers markets that we were not finding hand blended herbal teas. We decided it might be a fun adventure for the family to provide our own hand blended herbal teas to the community.
Since it takes a lot of dried herbs to make a sufficient amount of tea and many herbs we like to use can’t be grown in our area, we located suppliers of high quality organic herbs and spices to allow us to be able to produce products in quantity and year round. Our eventual goal is to find as many local suppliers as possible and possibly utilize some of our homegrown herbs in the product. Since sustainability and concern for the environment are also important to us we chose packaging made from recycled materials that are also fully compostable other than the wire tie.
We currently offer seven custom blends but keep an eye out for changes in the lineup as we learn what people enjoy and develop new blends. All of our 100% organic blends are tasty anytime and here are some details on the ingredients in each:
- At Ease – Chamomile, Lavender, Peppermint
Both lavender and chamomile are well known for their calming and relaxing qualities and drinking a tea steeped with these herbs can help with anxiety and stress. It is a good bedtime tea as chamomile and lavender both help with insomnia. Chamomile and peppermint both have a soothing effect on digestion, so after meals is also an ideal time to enjoy this tea. Choose this tea to keep your mind and belly AT EASE.
- Comforter – Chamomile, Lemongrass, Rose Petal
Many find sipping hot tea to be relaxing, but the added benefits of these three herbs can offer natural uplifting qualities to counteract anxiety and depression. Choose this tea as your COMFORTER in the evening.
- Peppermint Stick – Peppermint, Fennel Seed, Ginger Root
Peppermint, Fennel and Ginger are all well known herbs for digestion. Choose this after a meal to calm the intestines or anytime for the delicious PEPPERMINT STICK taste.
- Clarity – Holy Basil (Tulsi) Blend, Peppermint, Rosemary
Tulsi is an ayurvedic favorite to soothe the nerves and support healthy emotions. Peppermint and rosemary also can be used as an antidote for stress and to relieve headaches. As an added bonus, the calcium in rosemary is easily absorbed by the body. Choose this tea to enhance your mental CLARITY.
- Good Vibes – Lemon Balm, Lavender, Licorice Root
Lemon balm and lavender have a calming effect on the mind and body; the anti-inflammatory compounds in the herbs can help ease headaches. A small amount of licorice root gives the tea a bit of sweetness. Choose this mood enhancing tea for some GOOD VIBES.
- Soother – Ginger Root, Roasted Dandelion Root, Star Anise, Ceylon Cinnamon
These herbs were chosen for their anti-inflammatory properties. Together they create a great morning coffee substitute with roasted flavors from the dandelion and sweet notes from the star anise and Ceylon Cinnamon. The SOOTHER is one that benefits from simmering rather than steeping to extract all the flavor and medicinal qualities.
- Sofia’s Blend – Rose Petal, Peppermint, Lavender, Lemon Balm
This naturally uplifting floral blend is a great all around tea. It can be used for an aromatic start to your day, mid afternoon pick-me-up or to unwind at the end of the day. SOFIA’S BLEND was conceived by our tea-loving daughter!
Tea Accessory Recommendations
We have tried a number of products over the years we have been drinking tea. The following list represents some of the products we have bought and determined to be worth the money.
- Tea Ball Infuser – These are pretty common types of infusers and generally the cheapest. They are small stainless steel mesh balls that are hinged to allow you to open them and place loose tea inside for steeping. They typically have a locking mechanism for keeping them closed and a chain with a hook on the end to attach to the cup while the ball is immersed. We use these sometimes but they can be more difficult to use than our next recommendation and there are many very cheaply made versions of this type of infuser. The particular option we linked to is a two pack that is cheap and reasonable quality. We have several of these.
- Cup or Basket Infuser – This type of infuser is a small basket that fits in a mug and has wings that extend over the rim to prevent it from falling completely in. These can me made of stainless steel or plastics and often come with a lid for steeping which can often be used to place the infuser on when you are done steeping. These offer more room for the tea to expand than the ball infuser so you get a better result. There are many good options in this type but we like this particular one because it has small enough holes to keep most tea particles inside and yet is easier to clean than some of the others we have used. The cover for this one is also well designed to cover and be flipped over to use as a place to set the basket without allowing any liquid to drip off. The price is great, especially since you get two.
- Tea Kettle – We have had a couple tea kettles over the years but have been using this model since Christmas when we received it as a gift. It heats well, has a loud whistle, the lid fits solidly, and the spout opens easily with a button. Most importantly though the handle does not get overly hot which can be a problem with some tea kettles. The last one we had was so bad you had to use a hot pad to pick it up. To keep your tea kettle in good shape always remember to empty it when you are finished using it.