I had never been a fan of the herb rosemary until a friend of mine gave me her plant. She was moving out of town to a portion of the state where there would be cooler weather–weather of a different type that would make it difficult for her plants to thrive. The day Carolyn gave me her rosemary plant was the first day of my love affair with rosemary.
I suppose that love affair is a strong phrase for what I experienced for the first few months of owning that plant. She was pretty, to be sure, and her fragrance, fantastic. But I wasn’t a fan of the flavor of rosemary until my daughter used it in a recipe for rosemary-merlot beef last summer, and from then on I’ve welcomed rosemary into my kitchen, and into my life. Before that, I had only used rosemary in essential oil form, but now I find it to be one of the most important herbs on my homestead.
Rosemarinus, rosemary’s scientific name, means “dew of the sea” according to Rosemary Gladstar in her book Medicinal Herbs. She says it is “in reference ot the plant’s natural habitat on the warm, sunny hillsides bordering the sea.” It’s lovely pungent aroma make it a lovely choice for rubs, massage oils, and teas. It is a wonderful tonic, and can be used for colds, flus, rheumatic pain and indigestion. It is also used as a stimulant to the nerves and circulation, as well as an enhancer for memory and concentration, and a remedy for general fatigue and depression.
Rosemary can be used around the home as well as a disinfectant, an abrasive additive to homemade cleansers and a deodorizing soak for your hairbrushes. It can be used in sachets, as a flea-deterrent rinse for your animals, and of course, in cooking. This fantastic herb has so many uses, which makes it one of the best herbs to grow in your garden.
For more information about putting together your own materia medica,
see the following post and podcast episode:
Building A Materia Medica (Herbal Notebook)
Episode #32: Making an Herbal Notebook (at Survival Mom Radio Network)
Sources and further reading:
Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide
The Complete Illustrated Book of Herbs (Reader’s Digest)
The Complete Medicinal Herbal by Penelope Ody
Herbs for Pets by Tilford and Wulff
The Little Herb Encyclopedia by Jack Ritchason N.D.
If you are interested in expanding your knowledge of herbs, click over to the Herbal Academy of New England and sign up for their Intermediate Herbal Course (click course photo below). It’s been fabulous for me, and I’ve learned quite a lot in the past months. I highly recommend it! Also, I’d like to invite you to subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss any of my new Herbal Primer series, where I will be sharing all about the herbs, and recipes you can make with them.
NOTE: The Herbal Course link is an affiliate link, and if you click on it and purchase the course for yourself, I make a few dollars from it, all of which go to the production of this blog and its content. Thank you in advance for your support.
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