Tarragon is one of many Artemisia species with a storied past. Jeanne introduces you to her favorite genus.
If you love eating French food, and especially if you love cooking it, when you see a tarragon bush, inevitably you think of the French quartet fines herbes: fresh parsley, chives, tarragon and chervil. You may reminisce about a perfect (or broken) Béarnaise sauce. These days when I pass my tarragon plant I vow to actually use it, as we’ve neglected it this year. I also think of sagebrush. And absinthe, martinis, and Shakespeare. And weeds, malaria, and hippies. I attribute this motley mental association to tarragon’s membership in my favorite genus, Artemisia, a large group in the composite (sunflower) family, Asteraceae, with a rich history. Continue reading