Mountain tea or shepherd's tea is a plant of the family Lamiaceae and the genus sideritis, which comprises a multitude of species.
HERBS&OILS cultivates organic mountain tea on the foot of Mt. Siniatsiko (or Kayapasi, as it is locally known) in Xirolimni of the Kozani area, at an altitude of over 700 m.
The plant thrives in sunny areas at high altitudes and prefers stony, alkaline (pH 6-8) soils, which makes the conditions in the area perfect for its cultivation
With seeds taken initially from the native Sideritis population in the area, HERBS&OILS established its nursery in 2011, from where the herbs are transplanted in the autumn to suitably prepared parcels. When applying the right care in cultivation, the plant has a life span of 6-8 years.
Harvesting is done before full bloom and when the flowering stems are starting to become woody, which is when the content of the leaves in essential oil and aroma is the highest. Depending on the weather conditions in the area, the plants flower from mid-June to mid-July and only the aboveground portion of the plant is collected. The flowering stems are conditioned in the shade by natural drying, on the company premises.