It's been a hot summer so far here in southeastern Vermont, and the borage flowers have arrived just in time to add some cool blue to the garden and lift our spirits.
Borage wears a lot of hats in the garden: it is a beneficial companion plant and it brings beauty with a brilliant fireworks display of blue flowers. As if that weren't enough, the leaves are edible as are the bright blue flowers.
While they are in bloom, I enjoy borage flowers fresh from the plant . They are sweet and refreshing on a hot summer day! But most days there are too many to eat, so I harvest a handful from each plant (leaving plenty in the garden) and bring them inside to add to ice cubes.
I fill the ice cube trays with water then place a flower or two on top of each section. When the cubes are frozen, I pop them out and store them, leaving the ice cube trays available for the next round of flowers.
These ice cubes never fail to bring smiles to the faces of those who find them in their drinks!
Be creative: add a few minced lemon verbena leaves or calendula petals for a light touch of flavor or a little extra sunshine.
Carly Chickering lives in a straw bale home in Southern Vermont. She is an educator, organic gardener, student of herbalism and a self-taught artist.