Tarragon, for Seasoning and Health

June 6, 2008

Common name: Tarragon

 

Spanish name: Estragón

 

Latin name: Artemisia dracunculus

 

Family: Asteraceae

 

Geo-distribution : Botanists believe tarragon originated in Eastern Europe and Asia. Early records demonstrate that it was used by the Greeks and Egyptians and later spread to Europe by the 12th century. Tarragon was introduced to the New World by European immigrants, and today is a popular herb in many parts of the world. In Costa Rica, tarragon grows well in the highlands and mid-range elevations, or it can be grown in warmer regions of the country as a potted plant.

 

Botanical description: Tarragon is a perennial shrub-like plant with erect, bushy branches that may grow 50 to 100 centimeters tall. The lower, shiny green leaves are ternate with serrate edges, while the upper, younger leaves are lance-like in shape with smooth edges. The small yellow flowers are borne on terminal panicles. The leaves and stems have a distinct aromatic oil characteristic of tarragon.

 

Medicinal uses: Though tarragon is used primarily as a seasoning, it has also been used for centuries as a medicinal herb. It is used most commonly to relieve digestive problems, colds and flu, and as a diuretic to stimulate the action of the kidneys. Women have also found it useful for treating menstrual discomfort. Tarragon is also noted for its use as a mild sedative for the treatment of insomnia.

 

Preparation: Dried or fresh tarragon can be added to salad dressings or used for cooking. To make an infusion, steep one handful of fresh tarragon or one tablespoon of dried herb for each cup of tea.

 

Notes: Tarragon is sometimes offered in local markets and nurseries. Seeds are available from many seed companies abroad. Fresh stem cuttings can be started in prepared potting soil and later transplanted to the garden when plants are hardy. Tarragon requires moderately fertile soil and a sunny location for good growth. Trimming your tarragon plants frequently helps keep them compact and leafy.

For more on tropical gardening and medicinal plants, visit www.thenewdawncenter.info or write Ed at thenewdawncenter@yahoo.com.

 

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Freed Nicaraguan prisoner tells of torture
Central America
21 views
Central America
21 views

Freed Nicaraguan prisoner tells of torture

AFP - April 23, 2019

One Nicaraguan guard pinned his hand to a table with his knee while another ripped out a nail with a…

Costa Rica celebrates 150 years of free education
Costa Rica
8 views
Costa Rica
8 views

Costa Rica celebrates 150 years of free education

Alejandro Zúñiga - April 22, 2019

Costa Rica on Monday celebrated 150 years of free, obligatory and state-paid education with a ceremony at the Escuela Jesús…

Alajuelense eliminated in the Costa Rican Clausura
Soccer
8 views
Soccer
8 views

Alajuelense eliminated in the Costa Rican Clausura

AFP and The Tico Times - April 21, 2019

Liga Deportiva Alajuelense tied 2-2 against the reigning champion, Club Sport Herediano, and was eliminated from the semifinals of the…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!