Epazote which is also known as wormseed, Jesuit’s tea, Mexican tea, Paico or Herba Sancti Mariæ is an herb.
• It is native to Central America, South America, and southern Mexico.
• It is an annual or short-lived perennial plant.
• This can grow up to a height of 1.2 m.
• It is irregularly branched.
• It has oblong-Lancelot leaves.
• These leaves are up to 12 cm long.
• The flowers are small and green.
• It is produced in a branched panicle at the apex of the stem.
• It is grown in warm temperate to subtropical areas of Europe and the United States.
• It is known to sometimes become an invasive weed.
• The common Spanish name, epazote is derived from Nahuatl.
Culinary Uses of Epazote
• Epazote is used as a leaf vegetable, an herb and a tisane.
• It is known for its pungent flavor.
• It is used raw.
• It has a resinous, medicinal pungency.
• Its taste is similar to anise, fennel, or even tarragon.
• Epazote’s fragrance is strong.
• The flavor is somewhat like citrus, savory, or mint.
It can be used to:
– Season quesadillas
– Mole de olla
– Tamales with cheese and chile
– Eggs and potatoes
Medicinal Uses of Epazote
• Epazote is commonly believed to prevent flatulence.
• It is also used in the treatment of:
• It is used as an anti-cancer herb.
• Oil of chenopodium is derived from this plant. It is:
– Kills intestinal worms
Growing and caring conditions for Epazote
• It is an annual.
• It takes 7-14 days to germinate.
• The temperatures for germination is at 65-85° F.
• It prefers Full sun to grow well.
• Space the plant 10-12″ apart.
• Epazote will grow to roughly 4′ tall.
• It has long slender leaves and clusters of tiny green flowers.
• Epazote can be directly sown after the first frost of the spring.
• It will grow quickly with heat and light.
• Epazote can spread very quickly.
• It can potentially invade upon other plants.
• Hence, grow them away from other plants or in containers.
• For a continuous supply, restart every two weeks.
• Epazote can grow in a wide range of soil types.
• It is native to desert regions of North America and is tolerant of sandy soil.
• It requires less water than most other herbs.
• Sow lightly.
• It is approximately 1/4″ beneath the surface of the soil.
• Keep moist until germination.
• Epazote should not be over-watered.