officinalis), commonly called "starflower", is a well known herb which is
indigenous to North Europe, North Africa and Asia Minor but can now be found in almost all
temperate regions of the world.
The plant grows 18" to 36" high
and spreads 12" to 20" wide. The leaves can become straggly and messy, but its
abundant bright blue, star-shaped flowers, which bloom most of the summer, make the plant
one of the prettiest and most colorful herbs. It can frequently be found bordering herb
and vegetable gardens, and it is reported that fields of cultivated borage plants in North
America create a vivid green and purple landscape.
Borage has a long and colorful history
which dates back to Roman times when it was purported to "dispel melancholy and
induce euphoria". The historian, Pliny, wrote about its virtues in his
Naturalis. He described it as an anti-depressant "because it maketh a man merrie
& joyfull". In Elizabethan times, the flowers were considered to "make the
Today, borage is commercially grown for the
very valuable oil found in its seeds. The great value of this oil is that it produces the
highest yield (up to 24%) of gamma-linolenic acid*. Interest in GLA and borage has
intensified within the last 10 to 20 years as research has revealed the great benefits and
far-reaching effects of this essential fatty acid.
*GLA is an omega-6 fatty acid which is
essential to the body but is not commonly available in the average diet.
Take a look at
ShiKai Borage Dry Skin Therapy®
"dry skin that just won't go away". Borage oil delivers GLA to cells for
healthier skin membranes.