French Tarragon

The true French Tarragon has the best flavor and cannot be grown from seeds as this plant will not flower. Cuttings must be taken in order to reproduce this plant which makes it more expensive and harder to find. Tarragon grows in full sun and will grow to about 2 feet or so across. It is most important that this plant have good drainage and it is a good idea to add sand or grow it in a large container to make sure the roots will not rot and die. It is perennial but you should try to bring it indoors, either a potted plant or take cuttings, to grow over the winter months as it sometimes does not come back the following spring because of wet soil.

To harvest Tarragon, remove a third of the branch and chop the leaves finely. Tarragon does not dry very well so freezing is the best method to preserve the flavor.

To use Tarragon in cooking, chop the leaves very fine to extract the flavor for cream sauces and Bearnaise sauce. Add it to tuna or chicken salads, eggs and quiches, mayonnaise’s, and mustard salad dressings. It makes a wonderful flavored butter and can be combined with dill and parsley for fish.