I decided to grow borage this year because it has blue flowers and therefore attracts bees and also because I keep hearing about it as an Omega-3 rich oil. I’m not sure how I thought I was going to access that oil. Still – it is a pretty addition to the “wild” garden and we certainly have plenty of bees to pollinate the other plants we have.
Borage is an ancient, annual herb with many uses. It grows well in sandy or clay soils and tends to elbow out its competition. The leaves are hairy but can be used as a salad green when they are young and tender. They have a flavor similar to cucumbers. They can also be chopped and put into soups.
Best of all, the flowers are edible and can be used in salads, frozen in ice cubes to decorate punch or crystalized.
To reduce fever – make a tea using 1 tbsp. chopped leaves in one cup boiled water.
Hairy leaves can be crushed to make a pain-relieving compress.
Ancient folklore attributes borage with providing courage. Roman soldiers drank a borage flower wine before going into battle.