Rue - Jackman's Blue
Rue - Jackman's Blue
- In stock, ready to ship
- Inventory on the way
Usually available: All year
Life cycle: Perennial
Position: Sun / part shade
Soil preference: Well drained
This is how we pack and send your Herb Plants to all states except TAS & WA
You will receive
- 1 Rue - Jackman's Blue Herb Plant in a 50 X 75mm tube - General growing instructions
All of our Herb Plants are grown organically with certified organic potting mixes and fertilizers
Botanical Name: Ruta graveolens 'Jackman's Blue'
Jackman’s Blue is a compact hybrid variety of rue with fine silvery – blue metallic leaves, growing about 60cm wide and 60 cm high. Rue is grown largely for its ornamental contribution to modern gardens, where its strong aroma and attractive, fine blue-green leaves add a different perspective.
There are several varieties of common rue, which is a perennial shrub with many stems extending up from a woody base, spreading to about 45 cm wide and up to 1 meter high. The bitter tasting leaves of common rue are a grey-green, blue-green or even variegated and may be somewhat variable in the same plant. The leaves have a strong aroma, often described as unpleasant. The fringed yellow flowers are produced in early summer.
Rue grows wild in its native Mediterranean environment. It was highly recommended by the Ancients, such as Hippocrates, for many ailments. The name ‘ruta’ is from the Greek for ‘to set free’ and appeared in writing as early as 1562 that noted its varied medicinal purposes. Great Italian artists and painters used rue to help improve and preserve their sight, making it ‘sharp and clear.’
Rue was once added to Holy Water, earning the plant the name Herb of Grace. Rue also has a long history of association with magic and witches. It was regarded an anti-magical herb by the ancient Greeks who used it to remedy nervous indigestion when meeting new people – which they thought was bought on by witchcraft. In the Middle Ages, rue was also considered a powerful defence against witches, was used in many spells and thought to confer the second sight.
Today, rue is usually reserved for mundane activities, such as an ornamental border in the garden.
Like all rue, Jackman’s Blue is a hardy plant and grows well in cool or warm climates, particularly in areas with good winter rains. However, rue does not like the summer humidity typical of tropical areas as the wet conditions can contribute to root rot or leaf fungus issues. Rue will tolerate some shade in hot summer areas, but in areas with mild summers full sun is required.
During the first year, extra care and watering may be needed, but following this, the plants should be hardy and drought tolerant. Well drained, but generally poor, sandy or gravel based soils suit rue very well. Its natural Mediterranean habitat tends towards dry, rocky outcrops, including limestone rich areas. In acidic soils, limestone may need to be added to the planting area. Rich soil can lead to an overgrown or leggy appearance, in contrast to compact bushy growth. In frost prone areas, the plant is also more likely to survive if planted in poorer soils and given some protection. In its native habitat, rue would receive irregular rainfall during most of the year. Deep watering on a fortnightly basis would help to replicate this and ensure a healthy plant with ‘dry feet’. In summer, rue should be watered only in very dry areas and only if the plant looks in need of water.
Rue may be propagated by seed, but will grow readily from woody cuttings taken from late spring to late summer. If the woody stems from adult plant touch the ground they will form roots and can later be dug up and transferred elsewhere in the garden.
Medical professionals strongly advise against the use of rue for medicinal purposes due to its toxic properties. The chemicals in the rue plant have a strong stimulating, anti-spasmodic and anti-inflammatory action. However, in medicinal doses rue can have undesirable and toxic effects often worsening the very problem it was intended to treat, such as kidney disease. History shows that rue has a long tradition of medicinal use; including by women to induce abortions, use in aiding liver and kidney problems, treating skin problems and digestive upsets, encouraging onset of menstruation and eye complaints. There are now serious safety concerns because some medical conditions may worsen after the use of rue. Pregnant women should avoid rue due to the risk of uterine contractions leading to miscarriage.
Rue is not used often in food preparation, due to the bitter taste and pungent aroma. However, it can be used in salads, or sandwiches, in small amounts. It may also be used to flavour herbal vinegars. Rue is toxic in larger quantities, but is considered safe in small quantities as used in food preparation.
Rue has value as an insect repellent and is even said to repel dogs and cats, who don’t like the smell. Plant the rue bush directly where insects (or dogs and cats) are a problem or use the dried leaves where needed, for example, to repel moths in cupboards. Leaves can be picked any time for use as an insecticide infusion or dried for later use. Rue is also used in soaps, fragrances and culinary flavourings.
Due to the insect repelling qualities of rue, the plant can be useful planted near roses, or fruiting plants, like raspberries to keep insects away. Rue does not like basil.
All information provided on this website is for informational purposes only. Please seek professional advice before commencing any treatment.