Borage is more versatile than just an addition to Pimm’s. Bees and other pollinators love it and it is a herbal remedy which has been used for centuries. It was thought to dispel melancholy and impart courage; Crusaders were given borage-laced wine when they left for war. The flowers can also be used for a dye – as well as to repel insects. It is also edible. Borage seeds are a good source of omega 3 oil (often sold as starflower oil) and can make an alarmingly blue oil or pesto.
To make a borage pesto, treat the flowers as you would a normal basil pesto: put the petals in a mortar with some sea salt and pound them to a paste. Gradually add sunflower oil (milder than olive). Use it with pasta.
Other edible use: Borage and Spring Onion Frittata.
Thanks to the wonderful Plants for a Future and Frances Bissell’s book, The Scented Kitchen