Usually available: September to March
Life cycle: Herbaceous Perennial
Height: 70cm - 1m
Position: Full sun
Soil preference: Well drained
You will receive
- 1 Stevia Herb Plant in a 50 X 75mm tube - General growing instructions
All of our Herb Plants are grown organically with certified organic potting mixes and fertilizers
Botanical Name: Stevia rebaudiana
Stevia, which is also known as 'sweet herb' is a native plant of Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina. The Gaurani Indians of Paraguay have been using stevia to sweeten drinks such as Mate for hundreds of years.
The Japanese have been growing stevia in hot houses since the early 1950's and in the late 1960's when the government banned certain artificial sweeteners its use increased dramatically. In Japan stevia is used to sweeten pickles, meats and fish, soy sauce, fruit juice, soft drinks, yoghurt, deserts and low calorie foods.
Stevia leaves are used as a calorie free sugar substitute in food and drinks. Two or three leaves of stevia is enough to sweeten a cup of tea or coffee. Dried powdered leaves are 10 to 15 times sweeter than sugar, 2 tablespoons of stevia can replace 1 cup of sugar. To make a liquid extract combine 1cup of warm water with ½ cup of mashed fresh leaves in a jar with a lid and let stand for 24hrs. Strain and refrigerate for up to 1 month. Stevia does not brown or crystallize like sugar so cannot be used in recipes such as meringues.
Stevia doesn't adversely affect blood glucose levels and may be used freely by diabetics. It is attractive as a natural sweetener to people on carbohydrate-controlled diets.
Stevia is a perennial growing up to a metre tall, likes full sun and prefers an acid soil. It flowers late summer to early autumn, it should be harvested as it begins to flower as this is when the stevioside content (the compound which gives stevia its sweetness) is at its highest.
All information provided on this website is for informational purposes only. Please seek professional advice before commencing any treatment.