There are two ways to prepare herbal teas: an INFUSION and a DECOCTION. An INFUSION is usually made with the lighter, more arial parts of the plant - leaves, flowers, and non-woody stems. For an infusion, boil water, pour it over the herbs and let them steep for up to 30 minutes. For medicinal infusions, use one generous tablespoon of herb(s) for each 8oz cup of water. A DECOCTION is made with the tougher parts of the plant - roots, barks, woody stems and berries or seeds. For decoctions, bring the water to a boil in a covered stainless steel pot and gently add the herbs. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and allow the herbs to simmer for up to 20 minutes to ensure that the herbal properties are fully extracted. We recommend brewing medicinal teas a quart at a time so you can sip your tea throughout the day. Herbal teas have a shelf life of two to three days after they're brewed if kept refrigerated. To infuse earth energies with your tea, try a solar or lunar infusion: fill a large glass jar with fresh or dried herbs and water, cover lightly with a piece of cheesecloth or muslin, and steep for several hours in the direct sunshine, or overnight under the moonlight.