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Up to 3-feet tall and covered with blue, star-shaped, edible flowers that bees and other pollinators love. Historically used as a medicinal herb.
Borago officinalis

Borage, also known as "Burrage," "Beebread," "Beeplant," and "Talewort," is native to Great Britain, Europe and North Africa but has been naturalized all over the world. Its leaves are oval, pointed, with bristles on both surfaces. The stems are sturdy, ridged, and bristly reaching two to three feet tall and covered with blue, star-shaped flowers; the blooming period is from June into August. Its flowers are attractive to bees as well as other pollinating insects.

The flowers are edible and make an attractive addition to summertime drinks, either floated on the surface or frozen into ice cubes. In times passed, the flowers were preserved and candied for off-season use. Borage is an annual that will self-sow and return year after year in most areas. Each packet contains two grams, which is approximately 100 seeds.

Medicinal Herbs Borage has been used by people since prehistoric times as a diuretic, demulcent, emollient. Pedanius Dioscorides, the ancient physician and author of the original De Materia Medica, wrote of the plant's properties in the First Century AD, as did Pliny the Elder. Pliny called it "Euphrosinum" because, "... it maketh a man merry and joyfull," and was said to, "drive away sadness dullness and melancholy." Of course, consider that the prescription used for this ancient purpose included wine, which in quantity, with or without borage, produces similar effects.

Although it has been used as a potherb, the plant material can contain small levels (2 to 10ppm) of pyrrolizidine alkaloids, so modern uses are generally restricted to external applications in the form of poultices or extracts.
Companion to beans, tomatoes, onions
I grew this as a companion to tomatoes and beans in 2015. It came back in 2016, good for my onions. Young leaves were good in salads. Older leaves smell bad and have an off-putting prickly texture, but were good when cooked. It was attractive to rabbits and bugs (worked well as a trap crop), and needed to be cut back to keep it from getting too big and flopping over. The flowers are very pretty.
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Reviewed by: (Verified Buyer)  from zone 6b. on 12/31/2016
Strawberry Companion
I grew this in my strawberry garden in 2013 as a companion plant. I planted the seeds and all 3 plants grew. They really are a pretty plant when they bloom. I harvested the blooms to eat in salads and to feed the chickens. I trimmed the plant a couple times to keep it in check and it did just fine. I will plant this in other areas to help attract bees etc. It is a super easy herb to grow and I am waiting to see if it comes back on its own this year.
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Reviewed by: (Verified Buyer)  from Southern Illinois. on 1/3/2014
Lovely plant...
I bought this because I'd read in the book Carrots Love Tomatoes that it's good to companion plant with strawberries and it's a favorite of honeybees and other pollinators. It was very easy to grow and the pollinators did love it. We enjoyed a few a the cucumber flavored leaves. It is a beautiful plant - very ethereal looking in the early morning, sparkling with all the dew suspended on its tiny hairs. A few visitors asked about this plant and ended up taking seeds home with them.
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Reviewed by: (Verified Buyer)  from Pulaski, Virginia. on 2/15/2019
Great plant, can't survive Texas heat though.
These plants germinated and grew great. The leaves were nice, and the flowers were beautiful. But when it was 90ºF degrees in late June, the plants wilted and died, and only a few of them were able to flower. I recommend this variety for cool season areas; not Dallas, Texas!
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Reviewed by:  from DFW, Texas. on 3/2/2019
Lovely, Fun Herb
I've planted these in my vegetable garden for two years now, and although I don't know that I've noticed any significant companion planting benefits, they sure are pretty! The flowers don't have much of a flavor, but are very decorative on a fruit or vegetable plate. They do tend to get leggy and flop over, as one reviewer said, but I have not had trouble with them in heat, perhaps because they've always had at least afternoon shade. They also seem rather drought resistant. I did try the suggestion of putting them in ice cubes, which was fun - although next time I'll only fill the tray half full, freeze the flowers, and then fill it the rest of the way. Otherwise the flower just floats on the surface of the cube and soon breaks free when you put it in a beverage, which is a little weird. Overall, a great plant!
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Reviewed by: (Verified Buyer)  from Cincinnati, OH. on 3/5/2020
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