Used to make Mate – the most popular caffeine based drink in South America, the leaves are dried and used as tea. Consumed at any time of day, and traditionally in groups where sharing and community are paramount, it’s not unusual for people to share a brew from their very own gourd cup complete with metal straw.
A subtropical rainforest tree or shrub in most gardens, plants can be kept compact with regular pruning. Harvest the leaves to make Mate. Enrich the soil with organic matter including decomposed compost to replicate the rain forest floor and water regularly, especially in hot, dry weather. If you don't have the appropriate position outdoors, Yerba Mate can also be grown in a pot indoors.