Tarragon is a perennial herb that is a staple of French cuisine. This herb makes a great addition to savory dishes that include tomatoes, mushrooms, fish and poultry. It is also a popular addition to sauces, salad dressings and flavored vinegar. Plants average 24″ tall and produce narrow green leaves. In the warmer months, plants will produce small white flowers.
Tarragon leaves may be used fresh or allowed to dry,
Tarragon has numerous health benefits, many of which can be derived by consuming the plant leaves fresh or through a fresh leaf infusion in water or vinegar; others are produced by pharmacological extraction. Historically it had numerous uses for various cultures, some of which continue to be used today.
The Middle East
Arabic: Tarragon was used as an aid for insomnia as well as to enhance the taste of unpleasant medicines. Furthermore, it was used as an anesthetic for throbbing teeth, skin sores as well as cuts (Obolskiy, D., et al., 2011). Arabic herbalists also used it as a breath freshener (Charles, D.J., 2013).
Russia: Tarragon was used in the treatment of topical skin wounds, reducing inflammation and irritation. It was also used in treating allergic reactions that would occur on the skin (Obolskiy, D., et al., 2011). It was also used in Russia before in the treatment of scurvy, to reduce the convulsions as a result of epilepsy and as a treatment for night blindness (Roy, H.J., n.d.).
China: Chinese Traditional Medicine (TCM) uses tarragon as a protector and strengthener of the liver, as well as a diuretic. They also use it to aid in reducing topical skin inflammation (Roy, H.J., n.d.). The other uses the TCM has for the little dragon include the following; use for microbial infections, inflammatory diseases, malaria, hepatitis, gastric ulcers, cancer, diarrhea and circulatory diseases (Charles, D.J., 2013).