Yerba Mate Tea Products
This wonderful tea has been a part of the traditions of the Guarani Indians for centuries. There are stories of the Indians of the rainforest communities surviving drought and famine by being sustained only by the Yerba Mate tree. For this tribe it is known as the ‘Drink of the Gods’. Indigo Herbs brings you this drink in its pure natural form of a dried leaf tea. Our Yerba Mate tea has been traditionally picked and prepared so you can relieve the stress of the day and unwind with its relaxing properties.
There are many legends concerning the history of this small tree. The most common legend from the tribes of the indigenous Indians is the story of how Yarí, the Moon goddess, gave the tree as a symbol of friendship to a family of Guarani Indians living away from their community. In this legend Yarí and the goddess of the pinkish white clouds, Araí have the desire to visit earth and the rainforest. They take on a human form to wander the trees and enjoy the scents of flowers. Soon they become tired and rest under a tree. A hungry jaguar sees them resting and gets ready to pounce and attack the two goddesses. As the jaguar leaps an old Guarani Indian shoots the big cat with an arrow and the jaguar falls dead, thus saving Yarí and Araí. The old Guarani invites the two goddesses in human form to his home to rest which the women agree to. Whilst enjoying the family’s hospitality the goddesses enquire as to why the family is living in the jungle away from the community. The old Guarani answers that he, his wife and daughter live there because his daughter is very exceptional in every way and he doesn’t want her to lose her innocence. The next day the two goddesses leave and return to heaven. As a reward for the family’s good standing and hospitality Yarí magically plants the Yerba Mate outside the home of the family. In the morning she returns in her divine form and blesses the family and teaches them how to use the leaves of the tree for a refreshing medicinal tea.
Yerba Mate tea became popularised all over the world by the Spanish who immediately fell in love with the flavour and taste of the drink when they discovered it in the early 16th century. It was the Jesuits that started growing the tree in plantations to be shipped back to Spain where it began to spread through Europe. The Ilex paraguariensis is an evergreen medium sized tree that can grow up to 8 meters high if not pruned for easy harvesting. Belonging to the Holly family and indigenous to Paraguay, Brazil, Argentine and Uruguay, it has white flowers and the fruits can range from red, black and yellow. Because Yerba Mate has become so popular all over the world there are now many other countries that are producing this great tea.