Herb Garden Plants – Caraway

Garden Design ImageHerb Garden Plants – Caraway
Carum carvi (Umbelliferae)
Appearance:
The leaves are thread-like and bright green; the stems are smooth, reach 60 cms (2 ft) tall and support dainty heads of purple/white flowers in high summer. These are then the familiar black, ribbed seeds accustomed to flavour confectionery, cookies, bread and liqueurs.
Description:
Caraway perpetuates itself within the garden by self-sown seed, ensuring a filmy greenness among your herb garden.
Usage and History:
A herb of ancient cultivation, legend endows it using the capacity to prevent lovers and doves from straying. It was thus a well known ingredient of love potions during medieval times and was fed to doves, pigeons and poultry to stop them from wandering. Caraway seeds are utilized to flavour meat dishes, breads, soups, cheeses – where ever you look. Also try powdered caraway in meat loaf, pork dishes and beef stews. The roots could be boiled and served with butter and lemon juice. Caraway seeds are recognized to be an aid to digestion.
Cultivation:
Seedlings usually do not transplant well, so sow in situ in spring or autumn (fall). Caraway thrives in all of the nevertheless the most humid warm regions, the germination is quicker from fresh seed. Afterwards you need to thin your little plants to around  15 cms (6 ins) apart – grow in a choice of in groups or even in rows. When they are grown for his or her parsnip-like roots it is best to plant them in rows like a normal vegetable. They’ll grow in almost any well drained soil but need plenty of sun to make sure top quality seeds as well as a good flavour.
Harvesting:
To harvest the seed, cut the flower head as soon as the seed is ripe (and before it scatters) and either hang the oversees in a very paper bag or folded inside a clean cloth. This way the seed can fall naturally if it’s fully ripe. Sieve out any bits of stalk and store in an airtight container. One common practice is usually to scald the freshly collected seed with boiling water to rid it of insects which could then be dried off inside the sun before storing.

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