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R.H. Ballard

Herbal Handbook

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An illustrative and in-depth guide to 51 herbs and their uses, compiled by The New York Botanical Garden. The New York Botanical Garden is an iconic living museum founded in 1891. It is a National Historic Landmark, with 250 acres supporting over one million living plants. Each year more than one million visitors walk the grounds to enjoy the remarkable diversity of tropical, temperate, and desert flora and to attend beloved annual events such as The Holiday Train Show and The Orchid Show.

What makes an herb an herb? The definition is twobranched. Botanically an herb is defined as a plant that produces seeds but does not develop a woody stem. But an herb is also defined as any plant with leaves, flowers, seeds, stems or roots that can be used for seasoning, medicine, or perfume.

In this book you’ll find herbs in Sanskrit texts and Renaissance cookbooks, in Greek myths and Roman feasts, and lining the baby cribs of North American indigenous peoples. There’s a hollyhock festival in Japan, lavender fields in Provence, Indian curries, Greek spanakopita, and ancient love potions. The simple entries—which all include a description, instructions for growing, and tips for usage— take you from marshes to rocky cliffs, across pastures, into woods, through cultivated fields, across oceans, and along the Silk Road. Some herbs are considered weeds, and others are precious and treasured, handpicked from plants that flower briefly, with blooms that fade quickly.

And because it’s best to learn by doing, each herb profile includes a recipe or project using that herb. You’ll see how they can be chopped into salads and soups, sautéed in oil, or used to flavor pasta, garnish punches, enhance baked goods, and steeped for a comforting tea. Whether you find them growing in the wild or cultivate them with care; whether you use them to transform your mood or your food, welcome the spring, or cheer up your living room, we’re sure you’ll enjoy learning about these plants and trying your hand at the recipes that follow. Despite a multiplicity of uses, you’ll find herbs reassuring in their simplicity: they need water, and they (mostly) love the sun.

Pages: 176

6 x 8

15.2 oz



Additional Information & Dimensions

Pages: 176

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