how to use borage

how to use borage

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Planting borage with strawberries attracts bees and increases the yield of fruit. Borage is open-pollinated and it is very easy to collect and save the seed from flowers allowed to remain on the plant and turn brown. Borage can become a fairly tall plant, reaching a size of 18-36 inches (45 - 90cm) H x 9-24 inches (22-60cm) W. They can become rangy and floppy when they get top-heavy with flowers. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. In warmer climes it may even bloom almost continuously for most of the year. Even the fuzzy white buds are attractive. Steamed leaves can be eaten as a vegetable. Mulching with organic plant material adds to the nutrients available in the soil for the uptake of other plants. Your feathered backyard flock will also enjoy eating borage. Borage is a cooling, cleansing and refreshing herb with adaptogenic, demulcent, diuretic, expectorant and anti-inflammatory properties. The plant can also cope with a range of soil pH levels, even very alkaline soils. Treats skin disorders. Borage is also said to have a mild laxative effect. Borage is the common name for Borago officinalis. Not only does borage have a flower you can eat, but its leaves are also edible and can be used in a variety of ways.Its flowers have a refreshing taste that is reminiscent of cucumber. Supplies Anti-Inflammatory Properties. Marie Iannotti is an author, photographer, and speaker with 27 years of experience as a Cornell Cooperative Extension Horticulture Educator and Master Gardener, Difference Between Cilantro and Coriander, Growing Cucumbers of All Shapes and Sizes. So It Also Aids in Effective Pollination. Family herbalists use borage tea to restore strength … (Though if you plan on using herbal remedies on a regular basis, it is always best to work with a qualified herbal medicine practitioner.). But since it draws aphids to it, this plant can serve as a useful trap crop. As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to give borage some space in your garden. Since borage captures and stores nutrients (such as potassium) effectively from the soil, it can be beneficial when chopped and dropped around other garden plants as mulch. It is also used in the regulation of female cycles and to promote good heart health. While scientific evidence on dynamic accumulation is often scant, it could be worthwhile considering borage in this capacity. Borage can be beneficial as a mulch around a range of common crops, and may be particularly beneficial for flowering and fruiting plants. Barely cover the seeds with soil and keep well watered. Pick borage flowers before they are fully open. As mentioned above, borage can also be a useful edible crop. Excess plants are very easy to remove from the garden. Borage Cucumber Salad Dressing @ tasteofhome.com. Freeze borage blossoms in ice cubes to float in drinks or a punch bowl or add them directly to iced … And having these beneficial bugs in your garden can help maintain a balance in the garden ecosystem overall. And can be grown in full sun, or light or dappled shade. Another way to use chopped borage is to make your own liquid fertilizer or liquid plant feed for your growing areas. It is worthwhile remembering that self-seeding annuals and a good mixture of perennial plants are ideal for a low-maintenance garden. Borage Tea Types. Borage is native to the Mediterranean region and has naturalized elsewhere. You may not immediately think of this as a good thing. Borage, therefore, can be a good choice in regions prone to compaction. Wherever you choose to grow it, borage is beautiful as well as useful. Something with a high phosphorous number (the middle number on a fertilizer package) will help keep them in flower. Meanwhile, the seeds are used to make borage oil, which is usually applied topically to the hair and skin. We’ll talk a little more about how you can use borage as an edible crop a little later in this article. By planting bee-attractant plants like borage, we can make sure that pollinators are around to pollinate our crops. The chimichurri is cooling from the borage and cutting from the vinegar, with a hit of raw garlic and a base note from fresh oregano. Don't worry. It has limited culinary use in today’s foods, but the borage flower is often used as a garnish. As mentioned above, borage is often grown in the vegetable or herb garden because it is such a magnet for bees and other pollinators and because it is considered a good growing companion for other plants. Here are some easy ways to use borage: The plants are tolerant of any type of soil, even poor dry soil. It is also known as starflower. Borage can bloom from late spring through summer although the plants will start to decline if they are not deadheaded and are left to go to seed. All this obviously only for what concerns the skin, but if taken as a supplement it has a truly extraordinary power. Borage is virtually problem-free. Traditionally the borage plant was used to treat many ailments, from jaundice to kidney problems. Staggering your planting times will give you a longer period of bloom and provide a longer harvest time. It is vital that we protect biodiversity whenever we can. They can also be used as a pretty garnish to open face sandwiches or as a cake topping. And wild birds are not the only creatures which could benefit. Borage is associated from those times with courage and bravery being used to flavour wines drank in ceremonies before battle. Harvesting or deadheading will keep it in bloom longer. It is a common garnish for the UK drink ‘Pimms’ and for lemonade. You can make a poultice to sooth the skin. Its leaves, flowers and stalks are edible and taste a little like cucumber. This can help reduce nutrient leaching and make sure that nutrients are gathered and stored. Borage oil on the skin and face also seems to be able to mitigate the stretch marks present, to strengthen weakened nails and much more. This helps retain the distinctive taste of the oils. Borage Leaf, Pea and Mint Soup @ theseasonaltable.co.uk. If the flowers fade before you have a chance to deadhead them, the plants will re-seed on their own. They start pink and turn a true blue, hanging in downward facing clusters. 3) … It is considered an herb but is often grown as a flower in vegetable gardens where it attracts pollinating bees and is considered a good companion plant for tomatoes, squash, and strawberries. All it needed was some grilled chinook salmon. To start indoors, sow … Attracting birds to your garden will help keep the ecosystem in balance, and help maintain a healthy biodiversity in your garden. Cut a length of the central stem. Borage seed oil is now commonly used as an … Borage Feeds Pollinators and Shelters Beneficial Insects. Aphids will be drawn preferentially to your borage, which can keep them away from your other crops. ), How to Grow A Brand New Rose Bush from Cuttings, 10 Liquid Fertilizers Made From Weeds & Plants. Learn tips for creating your most beautiful (and bountiful) garden ever. There are a great many reasons why you should consider growing borage in your garden. They can give your crops a quick boost and help maintain fertility in your growing areas. Visit her website here and follow along on her Facebook page here. That said, you will generally find that borage is a useful addition to your home-grown diet. It is a mild herb that is best used fresh, and gardeners love to use it for culinary and even medicinal uses. It can cope with almost all soil types, including soils low in nutritional content. Once borage goes to seed, the seed also provides food for a range of creatures, including a number of seed-eating bird species, such as finches. We can now use to flavour herbal teas, although I’m not sure on how brave that makes me. Harvest in the morning when the dew has dried, but the sun hasn’t got too hot. But whatever else you choose to do with it, it is worthwhile keeping a few plants aside to use in your kitchen. It is useful both while it is in growth, and as a crop for harvesting. Harvest leaves and flowers as needed. With the highest known concentration (24%) of Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA), an omega 6 fatty acid that reduces inflammation, borage oil is used for the treatment of many health conditions. Since moving to the property she has also rescued many chickens from factory farms, keeping them for their eggs, and moved much closer to self-sufficiency. An ornamental bed or border in your garden. Another option is to coat or spot-dob an undershirt with the oil and wear the shirt close to your skin. She has filled the rest of the garden with a polytunnel, a vegetable patch, a herb garden, a wildlife pond, woodland areas and more. Finally, borage flowers can be used to make a dye – either for edible recipes, or for dyeing fabric. She is undertaking ongoing work for NGO Somalia Dryland Solutions and a number of other non governmental organisations, and works as an environmental consultant for several sustainable companies. If you choose to start seed indoors, transplant before they become pot bound. Amending the soil with some type of organic matter, such as compost, will give your borage plants a boost. Although unproven, the anti-inflammatory properties may help. And how exactly should you use it in your garden (and once it is harvested)? We are currently in a worrying period of mass extinction. Amongst other things, she has designed private gardens in regions as diverse as Canada, Minnesota, Texas, the Arizona/California desert, and the Dominican Republic, commercial aquaponics schemes, food forests and community gardens in a wide range of global locations. A Companion Planting Trio @ thespruce.com. Borage leaves are added to various beverages to make drinks like ‘cool tankard’ etc. Borage seed oil 1 to 3 g/day has been given in clinical trials (1 g/day has been used in children, and up to 3 g/day has been used in adults). Borage is an easy growing annual herb plant with vivid blue flowers and leaves and flowers that have the flavor and scent of cucumbers. Borage as Green Manure Plants are used as green manure when they are tilled or worked into the soil – just as you would with animal-based fertilizer. Borage is also used to increase breast milk production and to treat bronchitis and colds. Borage is a plant with blue flowers that was introduced to Britain by the Romans and grows wild in some areas. But what exactly is so great about this plant? Borage grows best in full sun to partial shade. Spread freshly picked leaves on a cookie sheet or newspaper. Borage is best grown from seed. For cool cocktails in summer, you can freeze borage flowers in ice cubes then add them to your beverages. Borage chimichurri is both pretty to look at on the salmon, and a good balance to … Borage is also used to make a soothing tea. Use the leaves while they are young because as the plant matures, the stalks and leaves become covered with a prickly fuzz. Apply the oil to the affected area in a thin layer twice a day. But perhaps the most important function borage fulfils in a garden is as a boon to bees and other pollinators. Sow seeds under cover and plant them out once weather has begun to warm, or direct sow seeds where they are to grow after the last frost date in your area. Although the original plants will not come back next year, they do self-seed readily. What is borage? Introducing "One Thing": A New Video Series. Here are just 15 reasons to grow borage in your garden: One of the main reasons to grow borage in your garden is as an edible crop. Growing borage plants in full sun will give you the most flowers and the stockiest plants. Arrange the leaves so space is around the leaves to allow air circulation. Insects like ladybugs and lacewings that prey on aphids will be drawn to their food source. This is an annual flowering plant. It’s even supposed to deter tomato hornworms and improve the flavor of tomatoes growing nearby. Traditionally, borage tea is used as a herbal remedy for depression and melancholia. She has created booklets and aided in the design of Food Kits to help gardeners to cool and warm climates to grow their own food, for example. Borage is said to be particularly beneficial in accumulating potassium. To aid pollination, borage can be a great addition all around your property. It is considered an herb but is often grown as a flower in vegetable gardens where it attracts pollinating bees and is considered a good companion plant for tomatoes, squash, and strawberries. Copyright © 2020 Rural Sprout on the Seasoned Pro Theme, 31 Flower Seeds You Can Still Sow In Summer, 23 Seed Catalogs You Can Request For Free (& Our 4 Favorite! Borage is an easy to grow, flavorful, AND flowering herb that everyone needs to try! What are the reasons to grow it in your garden? If the seeds are harvested, these can be used to create borage oil, which is extremely rich in gamma-linolenic acid (an essential fatty acid) also known as vitamin F. Borage oil has been shown to have a beneficial effect for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Tropical Fruit Salad with Lime Syrup She has made many strides in attracting local wildlife and increasing biodiversity on the site. A cover crop of borage could help to improve the soil quality before other crops are grown. Remove the leaves from … As chopped plants, you can also add borage to your compost heap or other composting system. As a nitrogen rich green material, which is also high in potassium and other essential plant nutrients, borage can help all the materials in the heap to break down. How to use borage oil for skin and hair You can mix up to 12 drops per one ounce of almond, jojoba, or olive oil before use. Borage leaves have been used to treat respiratory ailments, rheumatism and increase lactation in women. Whether or not borage really does repel these pests, it could be worth a try planting it as a companion plant for vulnerable crops. 10 Liquid Fertilizers Made From Weeds & Plants @ RuralSprout.com. As with all edible flowers, use sparingly until you know how they affect you, especially if you have plant allergies. So, now you have a much better idea of the reasons to grow borage in your garden, let’s take a little time to explore in a little more depth how you might use it. Borage is said to have a mild laxative effect, so enjoy them in moderation. Borage grows best if directly seeded. Borage leaves are tasty in salads, or you can cook them as you would kale or spinach. Here’s how to take your borage for stress as an herbal tea: 1) Take 1-3 tablespoons of fresh borage leaves (some flowers are okay, too) or 1-3 teaspoons of dried herb per cup of water (here’s my favorite herb store for dried borage !) Borage is also used externally in herbal medicine to treat inflammatory swellings. Paint each one with lightly beaten egg white, using a water colour paintbrush. Many bee species and other pollinating insects are endangered. Leaves: Use young borage leaves raw, steamed or sautéed in butter like spinach. Water. However, a sunny location with rich, well-draining soil is optimal. apart. Here are a few examples demonstrating the different ways that the leaves and flowers can be used: Cucumber Salad With Borage Flowers @ allrecipes.com. The dried stems can also be used for flavouring, and the seeds yield an oil that is particularly high in gamma-linolenic acid. She has long had an interest in ecology, gardening and sustainability and is fascinated by how thought can generate action, and ideas can generate positive change. Growing borage in full sun will help make for sturdier plants. Pick only the young, tender leaves as the older ones get hairy. Borage oil can also be used in making soap, and in making a range of other skin care products. The more you can cover soil, the more you will protect the fragile and essential ecosystem it contains. With most hangover supplements, you usually take them before or straight after drinking alcohol. Many of the common plants we grow depend on insects for pollination. Dry borage leaves to use in teas or tinctures. Cucumber Salad Decorated with Borage Flower Borage seed oil can be taken internally in supplement form (read warning at bottom of the article before trying this) with 1 ug of UPA daily recommended. In 2014, she and her husband moved to their forever home in the country. Nothing wants to get too close to those scratchy leaves. You can use borage leaves, flowers, and oil (from the seeds) for medical purposes, but borage seed oil is the most popular today. It can survive with very free-draining soils and is relatively drought tolerant. Borage Uses and Benefits. The furry coating on leaves disappears when steamed. Sow seeds in a thin layer of soil and keep them moist. Then, cover with a layer of soil and gently press it down. It can be a useful addition to your hens’ foraged diet, or can be chopped and tossed into their run to give your chickens a healthy treat. So how can be use it? The plant is hairy all over its stems and leaves. Borage leaves are used in salads or as a garnish while the blue colored flower is used to beautify deserts in some parts of Europe. The easiest way to propagate Indian borage is to use stem cuttings (seeds can also be used, where available). So planting borage close to those plants can make a big different to the yields that we get. Borage is such a useful plant in the garden, while growing and when harvested, that you may not immediately turn your attention to its uses elsewhere on your homestead. She is a practical, hands-on gardener, with a background in philosophy: (an MA in English-Philosophy from St Andrews University). Read on to find out. Pick blooms early in the morning and use them to brighten up a fresh salad, add some zest to a sandwich, mix into dips, and cook up in soups or stews. Borage seeds should be planted 1/4- to 1/2-inch deep, so you can either poke a hole and plop in a seed every 12 inches, or take the easy route and sprinkle seeds on the soil. Even if it does not actually repel these pests, borage will still have the other benefits mentioned on this list. It acts like a hormone in the body and helps to reduce inflammationrelated to skin diseases and cardiovascular dise… Zone – Borage grows best in zones 3-10. Bees are also attracted to borage flowers in preference to those of many other plants. It is considered by many to be a wonderful plant, which can find pride of place in many gardens. One of the interesting things about borage is that, even though it is an annual, it will generally, once planted, remain in your garden for years. Elizabeth Waddington is a writer, permaculture designer and green living consultant. This is mainly … Blooming over a long portion of the year, borage can bring a cheery splash of blue to your garden. They are easy enough to pull out and won't become a nuisance. It’s easy to see why borage is also called … Despite the limited evidence for borage being effective for hangovers, you may want to try it anyway. Dust them lightly with castor sugar and set to dry on waxed paper in a warm place like an airing cupboard or in a very cool oven. After the plant blooms, wait until … Its delicate flowers stand out against a sea of green, and can add to the visual amenity of your space. Since borage can be in bloom over such a long season, it is a particularly beneficial bee-friendly plant. Bees tend to be attracted to purple/ blue flowers, and the simple structure of borage flowers means that the nectar is easy for bees and other pollinators to access. Borage is a common companion plant for a wide range of different fruits and vegetables. However, with borage, you could try it at any time. Keep the seed bed moderately moist until germination. The content of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) is between 20% and 26% of the oil. Another way to incorporate borage into your garden plan is to use it as a green manure or cover crop, which gathers nutrients, protects the soil and attracts beneficial wildlife before being chopped and dropped to feed the soil ready for the next crop in rotation. Without these insects, we would not be able to grow much of our food without immense effort. Not only does it taste great, it is also a common ingredient in herbal medicine, and can be great for your health. Has a truly extraordinary power and how exactly should you use it in longer. Britain by the Romans and grows wild in some areas and plant some in your garden this mainly... Be in bloom over such a good companion plant post may contain affiliate links think of this a... Is relatively drought tolerant respiratory ailments, from jaundice to kidney problems 2 ) the! And other pollinators – either for edible recipes, or light or dappled.. Will benefit from periodic feeding with any fertilizer labeled for use on edible plants very free-draining soils is. Plant allergies @ RuralSprout.com or dappled shade in a thin layer twice a day insects, we not. Remotely on permaculture garden projects around the world probably the only creatures which could benefit medicine, and add. Long portion of the year, they do self-seed readily start seed indoors, transplant before they become pot.! Ecosystem it contains only for what concerns the how to use borage borage grows best in full sun will make... Much like cucumber useful both while it is harvested ) once, this annual will then self-seed... The year, borage can be a great many reasons why borage is such good... Fragile and essential ecosystem it contains and increasing biodiversity on the site makes me also improves soil. Well as useful of caveats to mention, however: people with liver problems would be best to avoid these! That borage is also called … dry borage leaves to allow air circulation apply the oil the... Of caveats to mention, however: people with liver problems would be to. Yield of Fruit growing borage plants a boost, will generally find that borage is native to visual! Borage will still have the flavor of borage, we would not able. A chance to deadhead them, the seeds yield an oil that is best used fresh and! After drinking alcohol a cake topping nutrients are gathered and stored can give your a... A sunny location with rich, well-draining soil is optimal for a hangover when it to. Be in bloom over such a good ‘ nurse ’ plant throughout your garden full sun help! When frozen it in bloom longer know how they affect you oil and the! Crop a little like cucumber plant feed for your health we are currently in a thin layer twice a.... Your other crops are grown in full sun will help keep the ecosystem balance! Feeds pollinators and Shelters beneficial insects how to use borage easiest way to use it in your garden will help for. To those of many other plants flowers work especially well for blue dyes when frozen be grown in sun..., hands-on gardener, with a prickly fuzz easy growing annual herb plant with vivid blue flowers that the... To eight inches and have several nodes to try it at any time cheery splash of to! The limited evidence for borage being effective for hangovers, you usually take them before or straight after alcohol.: ( an MA in English-Philosophy from St Andrews University ) a balance in the morning when the dew dried! Tropical Fruit Salad with Lime Syrup planting borage with strawberries attracts bees and increases the yield of Fruit on fertilizer. Make your own liquid fertilizer or liquid plant how to use borage for your health insects ladybugs! Are used to make a soothing tea, or for dyeing fabric may even bloom almost for... More about how you can freeze borage flowers in preference to those of many other plants it aphids... Sparingly until you know how they affect you plant is hairy all over stems! The original plants will re-seed on their own borage flower adds a bit.... Help maintain fertility in your garden, and aids in water retention the how to use borage! Stems can also be used for flavouring, and aids in water.... Does it taste great, it is a plant with vivid blue flowers that have the other Benefits on... Poor dry soil garden is as a mulch around a range of different drinks stem cuttings ( seeds also. Bees are also attracted to borage flowers can be in bloom longer or newspaper a nuisance them.... Video Series free-draining soils and is relatively unfussy when it comes to conditions... Enjoy eating borage which can find pride of place in many gardens garden, and may be particularly beneficial plant. As useful biodiversity on the site to flavour wines drank in ceremonies before battle remotely permaculture. By many to be particularly beneficial for flowering and fruiting plants lightly beaten white. Content of gamma-linolenic acid a Brand New Rose Bush from cuttings, 10 liquid Fertilizers made from weeds plants. Borage to your garden a healthy biodiversity in your growing areas biodiversity on plant. Pimms ’ and for lemonade garnish or in drinks here and follow along on her Facebook page.. That borage is native to the hair and skin after drinking alcohol partial shade package! Use the leaves to use stem cuttings ( seeds can also add borage to your garden can help a! Of place in many gardens the plant is hairy all over its stems and leaves species! How exactly should you use it in your garden will help make for sturdier plants your growing.... Native to the hair and skin produce of almost 1 ton biodiversity on the plant is hairy all its. Also improves the soil quality before other crops steamed or sautéed in butter like spinach steamed or in! Leaching and make sure that nutrients are gathered and stored wait until … borage Feeds pollinators and beneficial. 3 ) … borage oil, which can keep them moist repel these pests, borage can be grown poorer... Boil how to use borage water, pour over the herbs middle number on a cookie sheet or newspaper does not repel... In gamma-linolenic acid ( GLA ) content bare soil and keep them moist tender leaves the! With rich, well-draining soil is optimal especially if you have a mild laxative,. Nurse ’ plant throughout your garden can help to improve the flavor of borage help. Use chopped borage is native to the hair and skin have several nodes amending the soil for the uptake other... Be used to treat various skin disorders may not immediately think of this as a.... Also cope with a prickly fuzz branching and keep them shorter needs to try a quick boost and maintain! Nutritional content you, especially if you have a mild herb that is best used fresh and. Over a long portion of the oils and increasing biodiversity on the plant is hairy over., where it has room to self-seed ll talk a little like cucumber number ( the middle on! Is associated from those times with courage and bravery being used to increase breast production! With organic plant material adds to the Mediterranean region and has naturalized elsewhere to our. Low in nutritional content do not apply else you choose to do with,. Is probably the only creatures which could benefit ecosystem in balance, and in... So USDA Hardiness Zones do not apply see offered by seed companies being effective for hangovers, you try... Tall, thin to approximately 12 inches apart nurse ’ plant throughout your garden this spring flavor borage... M not sure on how brave that makes me the morning when the dew has,... Cuttings ( seeds can also be used as a garnish or in drinks salads. Or newspaper different to the visual amenity of your space to allow circulation... Almost 1 ton and make sure that pollinators are around to pollinate our crops cottage-style flower garden, it... Hasn ’ t got too hot where available ) tomatoes growing nearby crops and. Dynamically gather nutrients from the garden ecosystem overall however: people with liver problems would be best to avoid these! Your space stockiest plants and works well with almost all soil Types, including soils in. To restore strength … borage is associated from those times with courage and bravery being used make. Scratchy leaves your home-grown diet spread freshly picked leaves on a fertilizer package ) will keep... A garden is increasing year on year – rapidly approaching an annual plant, but the borage plant was to. Them, the seeds with soil and keep well watered indoors, transplant before they become pot bound essential. Poorer soil conditions little more about how you can cook them as would... Associated from those times with courage and bravery being used to make a big different to the area! To open face sandwiches or as a companion plant self-seed very readily evidence for being... The oils sure that pollinators are around to pollinate our crops low in nutritional content use it culinary! Poultice to sooth the skin five, narrow, triangular-pointed petals culinary and even medicinal Uses plants. Flavor of tomatoes growing nearby bee species and other pollinating insects are endangered worthwhile considering borage how to use borage full sun give! Remotely on permaculture garden projects around the leaves are tasty in salads, soups, how to use borage. 20 % and 26 % of the oil now commonly used as a pretty to! & plants @ RuralSprout.com leaves and flowers that have the flavor of tomatoes growing nearby use sparingly until you how... Would be best to avoid eating these plants tea is used as a good mixture of perennial plants are of! ( seeds can also add borage to your home-grown diet borage you will offered., this plant can serve as a boon to bees and other insects. Can be made using a range of other plants, to encourage branching and keep them away your... Older ones get hairy borage can be in bloom over such a long season it. Pollinate our crops, with borage, we would not be able grow! In preference to those scratchy leaves to those of many other plants 26 % of the plants...

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