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How To Grow Rue

Plant: Perennial

Hardy: To -20°C
Height: 70-100cm
Soil: Slightly Alkaline
Exposure: Sun
Propagation: Seeds, Division
Uses: Landscape Only
Growing: Plant rue in full sun in good, slightly alkaline garden soil. Grow new plants from seeds or divisions. 
Rue, or Herb-of-Grace, has blue-green leaves that are deeply notched and divided. Rather than ending in points however, the divisions become wider at their outer ends. Small yellow-green flowers grow several together in terminal clusters, and later turn into decorative brown seed capsules that have a beautiful carved appearance. Rue is perennial, and the stems branch upwards from the root to about 70-100cm. The foliage has a strong, pungent aroma. The variety ´Blue Mound´ has decorative blue-gray foliage.
Rue has been used in the past for medicinal purposes. King Mithridates of Pontus is said to have taken small daily doses of a mixture of rue and other poisonous herbs to make himself immune to the poisons he feared his rivals were trying to use to assassinate him. Other beliefs were that if the tip of an arrow was dipped in juice extracted from rue it would never miss its target, and that if the flints of old-fashioned guns were boiled with rue leaves, the weapon would always be accurate. The word rue means sorrow or pity, and the leaves were at one time supposed to have been added to holy water used to bless sinners in Holy Communion.
Rue is not used very much today as a culinary herb, but the seed heads are often used in arrangements, wreaths, and other dried decorations. Some persons are allergic to rue which may cause a skin rash.