All about the love of herbs

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By Mick Jensen

Members of the Ashburton Herb Society have set up an informative display in the public library to celebrate and share a love of herbs.

Four herbs are highlighted and displayed, including International Herb of the Year for 2017, coriander.

Herb Federation of New Zealand has also selected chamomile, puha and red clover as part of this year’s focus. Ashburton Herb Society secretary Pam Whiteford said the group was keen to promote an awareness of cultivating and using herbs.

Herbs were multi-functional and offered flavour in cooking and had many health properties.

Red clover and chamomile were both used to make teas, while puha, or milk thistle as it was also known, was added to soups and stews.

Coriander was a delicate aromatic herb and also known as cilantro, she said.

All four herbs focused in this year’s annual awareness week had therapeutic actions and medicinal properties, said Mrs Whiteford.

Ashburton Herb Society has around 20 members and meets on the first Wednesday of each month to share information and herb cuttings.

Next month’s meeting will feature the results of members’ herb diaries, kept over a 30 day period to discover the most commonly used herbs. To find out more, contact Pam Whiteford on 307 2801.