Sunday, July 02, 2006

Urban Fertility: Borage

There's something nurturing and calming about growing things. When I lived in NYC I was so starved for nature in my miniscule apt whose lone window faced the Chinese Consulate that I spent probably $20 and untold hours over my dwarf tomato plant for maybe 2 cherry tomatoes--but they were were quite delish and provided plenty of Walden-esque mental satisfaction. Studies show that just LOOKING at green, living things can make you feel more peaceful and that it's a good idea to do this everyday.

I still live in the middle of a city and therefore remain big on container gardening. This summer (it's not too late) why not try BORAGE? It is sometimes considered a weed, which means EASY TO GROW. Moreover, it looks pretty and has tonic, herby qualities. Mine grew from in a small plastic tub I got for 99 cents at the Ocean State Job Lot in plain old organic potting soil that was purchased from said job lot for an additional 99 cents for 5 lbs.

Borage basically raises itself. In the summer it will produce clusters of edible purple flowers for you, which look ultra-fancy on birthday cakes, in salads, and floating in summer gin-drinks--PLUS they contain anti-inflammatory fatty acids. In the winter, just bring the plant inside and keep it up for leaves.

The young leaves taste like cucumber (I know--the botanical equivalent of "tastes like chicken"), and are rich in minerals, plus, it's an excellent low-key tonic for the adrenal glands. I.e., before you take Paxil for your stressed-out lifestyle, try the leaves slightly steamed, in soups, or lightly cooked in pasta sauce and peace out!
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1 comment:

Christina( ^ _ ^ ) said...

This may be odd, but I found that having bamboo made me feel comfortable in class, my teacher let me have some. it made my testing easier.