Epazote

An annual herb that grows 2-3 feet tall, it can be perennial in warmer areas. Best in zones 8-11. Commonly used to flavor black beans, soups, quesadillas, potatoes, enchiladas, tamales and eggs. It has a distinct flavor that some call a cross between pepper and mint. It’s able to grow in most soil, but prefers full sun and good drainage. When harvesting, cut the center stem first, to encourage bushing. Prune the plant frequently to prevent flowering and assure a continuing supply of leaf, but don’t harvest more than half the plant at a time. Because of its invasive nature, however, it is best grown in containers.

History
Epazote has been used in Mexican cuisine for hundreds of years dating back to the Aztecs who used it for cooking as well as for medicinal purposes. Epazote is an an annual or short-lived perennial herb native to Central America, South America, and southern Mexico. It can also grow in sub-tropical regions of Europe and grows wild in warmer parts of North America. Often times it can be considered an evasive weed as it can be found growing voluntarily in gardens and fields.

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