Epazote
(Dysphania ambrosoides)
Dysphania ambrosoides Epazote

A traditional Mexican herb, your black or pinto bean dish will not be authentic without it. It is one of those oddly-scented herbs that you don’t grow to appreciate the aroma, but the strong acidic, almost lemony flavor can be quite addictive. “Epazote” also makes beans more digestible - use one 6” sprig per pound of beans and add during the last 30 minutes of cooking (try a pinch the first time.) You can also use the fresh leaves in cheese quesadillas. A short-lived perennial herb, “Epazote” grows to 3’ tall and wide and is winter dormant, so cut it to the ground in the fall. Let a few seeds fall to replace the mother plant, since older plants appear to stay dormant longer and go to seed faster, but deadhead the rest of the seeds unless you want an entire field! Very easy to grow, it prefers lean soil. Drought tolerant, though a little water will keep it green and productive for longer.

Anni J

Sun
Avg./Low water

Half-hardy Perennial
USDA zones 7-11