No doubt you have heard this famous song; but during the middle of herb harvesting in July…..I am singing a different tune! These are prolific growing herbs and four of my favorites. Individually they are valued for various culinary and medicinal reasons. They also make perfect companion plants in the garden.
Everyone seems to know Parsley (Petroselinum crispum) as it has been a staple on the American plate for decades. Parsley was originally placed on plates so that we might nibble on it if we need to cleanse a bitter taste or ease digestion. Several books on the meaning of herbs claim that Parsley is thought to cleanse feelings of bitterness as well as those in sour foods. I generally use parsley in herbal infusions or blended with basil to make pesto.
Sage (Salvia officinalis) is an herb that has long been associated with wisdom. When we use the term ‘sage advice’ we are suggesting these are wise words. It is also known as a symbol of strength. Often times Sage tea is used for respiratory illness to help one regain strength. I use sage both for medicinal and culinary purposes. I love its soft spicy aroma when baking a chicken or cooking an herbal rice dish. Medicinally it makes a wonderful tea and sore throat remedy when mixed with honey.
Rosemary (Romarinus officinalis) is my second favorite herb of all time! Herbal lore suggests that it represents love and fidelity. It was often used in wedding bouquets as a token of lasting remembrance. I adore the strong vibrant aroma. It clears my brain and warms my heart. In the kitchen, Rosemary is great for flavoring vegetable and shrimp kabobs on the grill and medicinally I like to use it as a hair and shower rinse that starts the morning with clarity and focus!
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris) has many healing and culinary properties. Its folklore meaning is one of love, courage and easing sadness. Thyme is wonderful in soups, stews and almost any dish you would like to have a spicy peppery finish. When using for health, it has some amazing properties as an antimicrobial. It can be made into a tea, cough syrup, chest rub or infused in vodka to clean your kitchen counters. It is an amazing herb!
Musical artists, Simon and Garfunkel immortalized these herbs forever in song; and I hope the above information helps you fully understand why they are known and cherished by most of the world. If you are new to gardening and need a place to start….these four herbs make a great beginner’s garden in a small plot or a large container. They all require full sun and are fond of dry, rocky soil as well a moderate watering. You can be as creative as you like in cooking and/or crafting. Please enjoy these tips and “remember me to one who lives there”. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme!!
Be well~ Be peace~ Be love………Sara