Sunday, June 24, 2007

Ruffly Rue


Ruta graveolens

This lovely little herb came to reside in my garden as a result of the Evergreen Garden Club's plant sale in 2006. It was a petite thing when I planted it last year, but it has grown to be a nice-sized and beautifully-shaped specimen in the herb garden this summer. Last year, though small, we had a couple of caterpillars take up residence on its leaves and munch happily away on them.

I love its bluish foliage, which reminds me of a jigsaw puzzle for some reason. I keep my hands off, however, because it's been known to cause severe irritation to some people in the form of painful blisters.

In the past, it has been used in Catholic masses as a component of holy water, earning it the name "Herb of Grace."

It's also been used extensively in a medicinal way, treating sciatica, headache, and neuralgia, just to name a few. It can cause kidney damage, however, so I think it's better left for the caterpillars.



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13 comments:

Kate said...

I planted one of these this year. I was taken with the colour of the foliage and what the plant was used for. I know it grows well here ... and quickly!!

Jean said...

I haven't seen this before. The foilage is very pretty. Thanks for the info!

Sara said...

What a striking yet unusual plant. Thanks for sharing.
Sara from farmingfriends

MrBrownThumb said...

Hmmm.

I never heard of this herb. Thanks for the post on it.

Happy GTS

Laurie & Chris said...

The foliage is very pretty but i'm not sure I would want it in my garden. I am allergic to everything!! I would be the one with the blisters.

Muum said...

I'll have to find some of that, the leaves do look like puzzle pieces!

Beth said...

Very pretty color and shape. I'd love to have that in my garden.

Drew said...

Really an interesting looking plant. Good shots.

gremlin said...

Love the close up shot! I've seen two other types of rue before, but not this one. Neat

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Lovely, Kylee. I wintersowed some this year but haven't yet planted out the seedlings. The skin irritation thing has been scaring me away... but I think that I need to get it into the garden after seeing your beautiful pictures!

Mark said...

Hi,I to have never seen this herb before,however i love the shapeand particually the flowers, it is not very often you get green flowers.Nice bit of information on it as well.

Cheers Mark

Calendula said...

Its little leaves are so delicate and beatiful. I like the silvery green color. This is an herb I've heard of before, but didn't know much about. Thanks for sharing it for GTS!

vonlafin said...

I loved this plant, but got such a rash when I was near it, I had to get rid of it.

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