Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Herbs; Mexican Tarragon;

Mexican tarragon is originally from Guatemala and the Mexican state of Oaxaca.
Family: Asteraceae
An easy to grow perennial. Tagetes lucida is t is native to Mexico. It likes to grow in full sun. This herb grows to a height of 70 cm. It flowers in summer and is not only welcome in the herb garden it is also a welcome addition any where in the garden as it is very attractive and freely flowering with its heads of deep yellow flowers. Remove the spend flowers and it will continuously flower into autumn. The leaves have a distinct aniseed scent and flavour like French Tarragon.
I cut my bushes back in winter.

Food; it can be used like French Tarragon. Leaves can be steeped into vinegar to make Tarragon Vinegar. I dry flowers and leaves to use in my herb salt. It gives the salt an interesting taste but not overpowering just a hint of anis.
A soothing, aromatic herbal tea is made from the leaves.

Planting by seed or division.
Planting Depth: Cover base of crown with soil, firm down.
Details: Cut back hard after flowering to promote new growth.

The botanical genus name Tagetes is in reference to a Roman deity, Tages which, an Etruscan god of prophecy, but was later adopted as a son or grandson of Jupiter by the Romans). The species name lucidus bright (cf. lux light) refers to the bright yellow flowers.

What is Paradise? But a Garden, an Orchard of Trees and Herbs, full of pleasure, and nothing there but delights.

William Lawson, 1618.


sweet bay said...

I love this plant but it doesn't love me, sadly. The foliage has a delightful fragrance.

Pietro said...

Very nice post, Titania! These plants are beautiful and so well described in your pictures and text.
I have some flowers in my post and two commenters asked me what's their name, but I don't know it! If you can tell me their name I'll write it in the post!
Thanks so much, Titania!
Happy new week!

Janie said...

Interesting to learn the derivation of the genus species name.
I love tarragon as an herb but I've never grown it. Perhaps I will now be inspired to try.

Stephanie said...

I have never used tarragon Titania. But it is a 'big' (tall!) herb plant isn't it? I love watering my rosemary and mint every morning, they releases aromatic scent that's very refreshing. Your tarragon releases scent when watered? Btw, I like the bright yellow blooms :-D

Pietro said...

Thanks for the name of the plant, Titania! I've put your link together with the one of Sandy in my post!
Have a nice day!

Titania said...

sweet bay, it is in general an easy plant to grow. Might it be to wet, or to much frost?

Thank you Pietro.

Janie, it might die down in winter, but it will shoot again in spring.

Stephanie, you are right some herbs release their delightful fragrance. I have not noticed this with the Tarragon as I do not water it often, but when you c rush the leaves or chew one the scent is like liquorish.

Pietro, thank you for the link.

kanak7 said...

Hello dear Trudi,

This is not something I've seen or grown but I can imagine how wonderful it must be!

I'm catching up on blogposts now and I know there are plenty of new things waiting for me:) Thank you so much for the message you left on my blog. And although my response is late, I'd like you to know that your words mean/meant a lot to me.

Have a great gardening week!


Barbarapc said...

I've been looking for some pretty flowers for my new veg/herb garden. This little marigold might be just the thing - and it's definitely far more attractive than the French taragon which is an Artemisia.

Kathy said...

I always find your posts so interesting and informative. And it looks like you've becomed the "go to lady" for plant identification!

lotusleaf said...

I have not used tarragon in my cooking. Interesting to know how its name derived.

Autumn Belle said...

This is the first time I hear of tarragon herb. The yellow flowers are striking and pretty.

Laura in Paris said...

Thank you for yet another good lesson in botanics!