Borage - Blue Beauties Always in Bloom
Borage is a beautiful plant to have in your garden or as a potted plant. Borage makes an excellent companion plant strengthening the resistance to insects and diseases of nearby plants. A garden without Borage is like a heart without courage.
This annual has oval leaves on hairy stems, which are both cucumber scented when crushed, and blue flowers with black stamens. Planting Borage in the garden encourages beneficial green lacewings to lay lots of eggs. Swiss studies have discovered that there are more young lacewings, their eggs and hatchlings (called Aphid lions!) among Borage plants than anywhere else in the garden. Intersperse plantings of borage throughout your garden to feed the Aphid lions, lacewings and seriously drop the population of aphids in your garden this season. Plants are up to 24" in height. It can grow rapidly in the garden spreading quickly if not given boundaries and regularly self-seeds. Borage grows well indoors and does excellent in pots.
Also known as starflower and originating in Syria, Borage has been used by herbalist for centuries.
Treasured as a seasonal pasta filling in Italy and is used all across the Mediterranean in fresh cooking. The blossoms are sweet and herbaceous, while the leaves and stems have a cucumber-like scent and flavor. The leaves are mineral rich and used as a cooling element in drinks and dips. The powder-blue flowers are the traditional garnish for the classic Pimm’s cup beverage. The flowers have a sweet honey-like taste and are used to decorate salads and cakes and are frozen in ice cubes. A leaf and flower infusion is an adrenalin tonic taken for stress, depression, or cortisone and steroid treatment. It reduces fevers, dry coughs, and dry skin rashes and stimulates milk flow. Pressed seed oil can be used like Evening Primrose for menstrual and irritable bowel problems, eczema, blood pressure, arthritis, and hangovers. Leaves should be eaten in moderation.
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