Friday, 27 September 2013

Borage - borago officinalis

Last year I got my hands on some borage seeds. I had never grown them before and I was a little worried they would not grow for some reason, I think because they looked so beautiful and rare in all the photos I'd seen. Because of this I popped the seeds into little pots first. They took no time at all to sprout, and soon enough they were in the herb garden.

One of my first borage seedlings.

Borage grows very well with little attention needed.

Borage promotes cheerfulness in the herb garden.
When my borage seedling began to establish and flower, I was pleased at the beauty and colour they give. They promote cheerfulness, and are a hardy asset to any herb garden. They exude energies which combat melancholia, helping to lift ones spirits. I planted in summer, so sadly they seeded very quickly and didn't reach their full potential due to the heat waves Melbourne experienced. However, the seedlings grew on their own during autumn, and grew slowly into winter! So now it's spring, and my borage is blooming with all its glory.
The beautiful five-pointed star flowers.


 

Borage is a beautiful ancient looking herb. It looks bit like a weed, with its hairy leaves and stems, but the flowers are other worldly! Sci-fi five-pointed star flowers which appear pink at first then they turn a vivid blue that instantly gives off joyful energy. Snails and slugs seem to think they taste good, so some night time picking is needed after it rains. Bees love them too, which is a great sight to see. Bees are always welcome in my herb garden!
Borage leaves taste like fresh cucumber, very crunchy. The flowers are sweet, and cucumber like too. There are many recipes for borage, the leaves and flowers are edible but I have heard that the leaves are sometimes harmful to people with liver problems due to some alkaloids it contains, but is also high in calcium and potassium.
Borage, ruled by Mars.
 
Borage is ruled by the planet Mars, and is said to originate from the Mediterranean and middle-eastern regions. It is an annual, loves the sun, and self seeds very easily. The leaves can be used as a poultice for wounds, and they can be used to make a tea for people suffering from kidney problems, and even for a fever or sore throat.
The flowers can be used to add some decoration to altars, salads and other foods. You can even put them in ice-cube treys to freeze them, adding colour and joy to drinks. They can even be added to baths for their therapeutic cheerful qualities. The flowers also offer protection if carried or worn (in button-holes or in your hair) when out walking. Growing borage around the house will promote courage, and are a powerful component in spells to do with money, business, and sadness. The roots can be dried for other forms of magical work, such as in incense mixtures, or infusions.

Embroidered borage design with bee friend.

Borage appears throughout history in herbals.

A beautiful inspiration for artists.