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Growing Borage, also Burrage, Bugloss

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
        P P P P        

(Best months for growing Borage in Australia - tropical regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 10°C and 25°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 20 cm apart
  • Harvest in 8-10 weeks. Use leaves before flowers appear, otherwise they will be 'hairy'. .
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Strawberry, tomatoes, zucchini/squash. Deters pests from many plants.
  • Borage flowers
    Borage flowers

A tall, attractive plant, often grown in flowerbeds. Bright blue star-shaped edible flowers. Grow in a sunny spot with well drained fertile soil. Borage dies down in the winter, but probably you will not need to buy any more seeds as it self seeds quite vigorously and spreads around the garden. Luckily, it is so attractive that it adds to the general design.

Will grow almost anywhere but prefers well-drained soil. Can be transplanted when young but older plants do not move well.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Borage

Has a slight cucumber taste which goes well in salads and when cooked with silver beet or cabbage.
The flowers make a pretty drink decoration when frozen in an iceblock.

Your comments and tips

29 Nov 17, JB (Australia - temperate climate)
I would be careful when planting it as a companion in among other plants because it grows very large and spreads everywhere and can actually end up shading other plants and taking up a lot of room. It's a great way to attract bees though so I would recommend setting an area where there is space for it to grow aside and planting it there. It flowers pretty much all year round and pops up absolutely everywhere once it gets going which is good because you can cut it back or pull it out when it's in the way and you know it will appear again later somewhere in the garden.
17 Oct 14, Elizabeth (Australia - temperate climate)
I thought Comfrey was good as a fertiliser, not Borage. If it is that's great as I find it coming up everywhere! I keep bees and they love it. It grows nine months a year here. Flowers look lovely in ice blocks.
01 Dec 13, Max (Australia - temperate climate)
Borage is great with pasta as well!! Just get some young leaves, chop them in a half, get the water boiling. In the mean time peel one small potato per pasta portion. I use fusilli. Chop potatoes finely and throw pasta borage and potatoes at once, with a pinch of extra salt for the spuds! While it's cooking, fry some anchovies and garlic in a frying pan, then drain the pasta and throw it in the frying pan and saute for a couple of minutes. Delicious and unique! Buon appetito!
12 Nov 13, Shane Mcsweeney (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I have had wonderful success with Borage this year in melbourne. It survived a cold winter and has had the most amazing blue flowers. In conjunction with mustard i have had excellent bee activity for the last few months as we have entered spring now. As Borage grew quite big in my vege garden, i am hoping to only have one plat growing as a companion. I haven't used it for any eating yet, but i have read it is ok for salads.
19 May 13, Lockie (Australia - temperate climate)
Borage is a great bee attractor. Only use young (small) leaves in salads as they get bigger they get fury.
16 May 13, Wow! (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
Note the growing hints that borage IS VIGOROUS! Have planted it and boy does it spread. But it is a great green cover crop. Any problems with borage taking over the world LOL and just trim and add to the compost heap.
07 Apr 12, graham best (United Kingdom - warm/temperate climate)
I am growing it to feed the larvae of the Jersey Tiger Moth, a beautiful moth found only in the Channel Islands and the south of England.
04 Mar 12, Eve (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
I have heard you can make a borage tea which has positive medicinal properties. A quick google will provide information as the site would not let me paste a link. I feed my chooks borage from time to time among other herbs and vegetable greens.
25 Aug 11, Elizabeth (Australia - temperate climate)
Bodage is a great companion plant for strawberries.
18 Oct 11, Sophie Molnar (Australia - temperate climate)
I have just started my kitchen garden. The only place I could have it is in the front yard.I removed all the rocks and black matting, its all been dug over with compost added. It took four weekends to do. I have planted quite a few strawberries( about 30 plants), in one whole section. The borage sounds like a good idea. What can I use this for other than to be kind to my strawberries and encourage then to reward me with lots of fruit. In my other side of my garden I have parsley, sage, garlic chives, chives, capsicum (3 from last year that I planted in a pot too late) and 2 tomato plants, (one that I planted too late last year and it was also in a pot) and three baby asparagus plants, ( I have taken on board the three year wait, I was told that by a customer when I purchased my asparagus). I have also planted many, many petunas on either side of my two new garden beds, until such time as I know what to plant. I don't really want to waste the water on just flowers. Any suggestions, I live in South Australia in the Western suburbs. And I'm a newbee at this. Any help will be greatly appreciated.
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