Borage oil can also be used in making soap, and in making a range of other skin care products. Borage leaves have been used to treat respiratory ailments, rheumatism and increase lactation in women. It’s even supposed to deter tomato hornworms and improve the flavor of tomatoes growing nearby. Even the fuzzy white buds are attractive. Blooming over a long portion of the year, borage can bring a cheery splash of blue to your garden. Arrange the leaves so space is around the leaves to allow air circulation. You can use borage leaves, flowers, and oil (from the seeds) for medical purposes, but borage seed oil is the most popular today. Borage Uses and Benefits. Your feathered backyard flock will also enjoy eating borage. The pollinator attracting properties of borage are one of the main reasons why it makes such a great companion plant for a range of crops. Borage grows best in full sun to partial shade. Wherever you choose to grow it, borage is beautiful as well as useful. (Though if you plan on using herbal remedies on a regular basis, it is always best to work with a qualified herbal medicine practitioner.). The furry coating on leaves disappears when steamed. Dry borage leaves to use in teas or tinctures. It can survive with very free-draining soils and is relatively drought tolerant. Many bee species and other pollinating insects are endangered. Whether or not borage really does repel these pests, it could be worth a try planting it as a companion plant for vulnerable crops. 3) … So how can be use it? 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 unproven, the anti-inflammatory properties may help. However, with borage, you could try it at any time. What is great for the bees is great for the gardener or grower too. It has limited culinary use in today’s foods, but the borage flower is often used as a garnish. It flowers from around June right through to October in most temperate climates, and grows to around two feet in height at a medium rate. Something with a high phosphorous number (the middle number on a fertilizer package) will help keep them in flower. Steamed leaves can be eaten as a vegetable. Aphids will be drawn preferentially to your borage, which can keep them away from your other crops. 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. She has filled the rest of the garden with a polytunnel, a vegetable patch, a herb garden, a wildlife pond, woodland areas and more. 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. The plants are tolerant of any type of soil, even poor dry soil. Borage leaves are added to various beverages to make drinks like ‘cool tankard’ etc. So borage can be a great choice for those with limited time, who want to create a garden where there is less to do each year. But whatever else you choose to do with it, it is worthwhile keeping a few plants aside to use in your kitchen. 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! Traditionally the borage plant was used to treat many ailments, from jaundice to kidney problems. 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. For cool cocktails in summer, you can freeze borage flowers in ice cubes then add them to your beverages. Elizabeth Waddington is a writer, permaculture designer and green living consultant. Borage is relatively unfussy when it comes to growing conditions. apart. Another way to use chopped borage is to make your own liquid fertilizer or liquid plant feed for your growing areas. In 2014, she and her husband moved to their forever home in the country. An ornamental bed or border in your garden. Cut a length of the central stem. Borage is an annual plant, so USDA Hardiness Zones do not apply. Mulching with organic plant material adds to the nutrients available in the soil for the uptake of other plants. Borage seed oil is now commonly used as an … Harvest leaves and flowers as needed. Despite the limited evidence for borage being effective for hangovers, you may want to try it anyway. Sow seeds in a thin layer of soil and keep them moist. 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. Borage is a somewhat gangly plant, but you barely notice it because the star-shaped flowers are so vibrant. As chopped plants, you can also add borage to your compost heap or other composting system. Once seedlings are about 2-3 inches tall, thin to approximately 12 inches apart. 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. Borage plants require routine watering until they establish. 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. 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. She graduated from allotment gardening to organically managing 1/3 of an acre of land, including a mature fruit orchard,which she has turned into a productive forest garden. This post may contain affiliate links. Borage can be beneficial as a mulch around a range of common crops, and may be particularly beneficial for flowering and fruiting plants. GLA(2) is a type of fatty acid that is commonly found in nuts and seeds in which the body converts to prostaglandin E 1 ( PGE1). As gardeners and growers, one of the things we can do is make sure we have flowers in bloom for pollinators throughout the year. Borage is a plant with blue flowers that was introduced to Britain by the Romans and grows wild in some areas. Borage grows best if directly seeded. By planting bee-attractant plants like borage, we can make sure that pollinators are around to pollinate our crops. Finally, borage flowers can be used to make a dye – either for edible recipes, or for dyeing fabric. They can also be used as a pretty garnish to open face sandwiches or as a cake topping. It can cope with almost all soil types, including soils low in nutritional content. What are the reasons to grow it in your garden? You may not immediately think of this as a good thing. Borage is often mentioned in organic gardening circles. It also improves the soil quality, reduces weeds, and aids in water retention. The first and most common way to use borage in your garden design is as a companion plant. Borage is virtually problem-free. It is also used in the regulation of female cycles and to promote good heart health. This helps retain the distinctive taste of the oils. Another thing to consider is that since they attract aphids and other pest species, they also attract a range of other, more beneficial insects. Don't worry. For a hangover the limited evidence for borage being effective for hangovers, how to use borage can use:! Wines drank in ceremonies before battle can bring a cheery splash of blue to your borage, can... Bush from cuttings, 10 liquid Fertilizers made from weeds & plants garden is... 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