Appalachia Through My Eyes

Appalachia Through My Eyes – Borage Brings Joy

blue borage blooms

I used to grow borage in the front flower garden. The plant would re-seed itself and come up year after year until one year it didn’t.

This year I planted a new patch of borage in the back garden and it did very well. I had big plans of discovering what I could use the plant for, but never did manage to use it as a medicinal plant nor as part of our diet.

The other day I was reading and came across the perfect antidote for my “not using borage” guilt.

“…for the comforte of the heart, for the driving away of sorrowe, and increasing the joie of the minde.”

—John Gerard – “Herball” 1597

As I read the line from Gerard I thought “Ah ha! I didn’t manage to use the plant for sustenance, but it’s cheery drooping blooms without a doubt served as a comfort to my heart, drove away sorrow, and greatly increased the joy of my mind.

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  • Reply
    August 25, 2021 at 5:27 pm

    I plant borage because the bumblebees love it, and few things brighten my day more than a host of bumblebees buzzing blissfully amongst my borage.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    August 25, 2021 at 5:15 pm

    Ain’t it sad that it isn’t a feral plant! If it were then you could “forage for borage and wild mushrooms”. Don’t that have such a lyrical sound?

  • Reply
    Donald Wells
    August 25, 2021 at 4:06 pm

    The blooms on the Borage Flowers are gorgeous, they look similar to a star shape .I can see how they could bring a little Joy to anyone’s life with their beauty. I was wondering perhaps if Granny, or you Tipper, have seen any growing on the side of the road LOL.My wife thinks their beautiful too.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    August 25, 2021 at 10:38 am

    Tipper–I have no idea how in the world you came across Gerard. I’m somewhat familiar with his work thanks to having studied Elizabethan history in some detail as well as having read quite a bit in the books of the era. He was a fascinating fellow but I would note that most of his book was plagiarized. He got by with it in part because he had solid connections at court, partly because stealing others words and ideas was commonplace then, and thanks to his undoubted facility with words.

    That’s probably far more than you or your readers care to know, but it is, as the the late Paul Harvey said, “the rest of the story.”

  • Reply
    Margie G for gladness by flowers
    August 25, 2021 at 9:23 am

    I’ve never heard of nor seen borage but it’s a beautiful blue- purple flower! Seeing that lovely beauty every day would definitely add joy and chase woes away! I just sit for hours looking at my plants and studying all the bees and wasps that interest me. I love to watch the butterflies and humming birds too! I planted spearmint, peppermint and cat mint, it’s wildly tall and the flying pollinators just love it not to mention me. Flowers and babies are a touch of heaven on the earth I think!!!

  • Reply
    Sheryl A Paul
    August 25, 2021 at 9:08 am

    I agree Miss Cindy

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    August 25, 2021 at 8:23 am

    Hmmmm do you maybe have too many things you want to do to get to them all? Somehow I suspect so. Speaking for myself, the way I was raised I measure my own self-worth by doing. However, I never do enough which leaves me in a bind. I thought for a long time I was going to find that spot where I could be settled but it doesn’t look like it is going to happen. Part of it, I reckon, is that I have been accused of thinking too much. Kinda true as I reckon all you all can tell. But I haven’t given up hope yet.

    I guess maybe some of us need to learn how to be kind to ourselves.

    • Reply
      Margie G
      August 25, 2021 at 9:26 am

      Thinking is never crowded. Enjoy thought. There are even statues made as an ode to great thinkers….

  • Reply
    Ray Presley
    August 25, 2021 at 7:36 am

    Just proves that some things you don’t fully appreciate ’til they’re gone. I hope you will never have a complete dearth of things that bring joy into your heart and the lives of yourself and your family. Couldn’t wish for more.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    August 25, 2021 at 7:03 am

    That’s beautiful, Tip, and I could certainly use a little more joy of my mind these days!

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