Costmary Seeds - (Tanacetum balsamita)
- Seed Count:
- Approx 100 seeds per pack
- Days to Germination:
- 1-4 weeks at 60-70F
- Plant Spacing:
- Light Preference:
- Full sun
- Soil Requirements:
- Well drained soil
- Heirloom, Non-Hybrid, Non-GMO seeds
Costmary - The Biblical Herb and So Much More
Costmary is not as common as in the past, but its charming appearance, sweet fragrance and history are filled with fascinating tales from across the globe. Costmary is also called mace, Alecost and Bible leaf.
Soft, aromatic grey green foliage and bunches of small cheery yellow flowers. Closely related to tansy, its shiny pear-shaped light green leaves are from 6-8" long. Thrives most anywhere, does best in dry conditions, spreads by rhizome when happy.
Originally found in the Orient, costmary was introduced into England in the 16th century where it became very popular. This aromatic herb has always been associated with Christianity. The fragrant leaves were tucked into Bibles and prayer books, allayed hunger and sleepiness during long sermons! Thus, nicknamed "Bible leaf". Costmary held a place in the U.S. Pharmacopoeia until 1788 for its balsamic, preservative and antiseptic properties as well as a noted insecticide. Used before hops to clear, flavor and preserve ales.
Fresh leaves give a sharp tang with a spearmint scent in salads, soups, game stuffing and fruitcakes. Also used to sweeten linen closets and in potpourris, as the scent is retained when dried.
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Costmary leaves were tucked in bibles because they repel silverfish, and thus preserved bibles from being eaten by the bugs. The good scent noticed by parishioners, now that's a secondary benefit!