By Cindy Naas
There are many foods reputed to have aphrodisiac tendencies, and many of these foods are fruits and vegetables.
While it may be too late to grow these for this Valentine’s Day, you might consider serving some or all at a special dinner this year.
Who knows- you may even be inspired to grow your own fig tree because of this!
- Asparagus – long considered an aphrodisiac, French bridegrooms were fed three courses of this vegetable prior to their wedding night. It is also rumored that the Romans fed asparagus to their stallions. At any rate, asparagus is delicious, good for you and a great plant for an urban farmer, even growing well in dedicated pots.
- Figs – perhaps it’s the fig’s appearance which gives it the reputation, but certainly its flavor and sweetness earn it a place on any romantic menu. Figs can be grown even as far north as zone 6 with appropriate winter protection although they produce more fruit a bit further south.
- Garlic – considered the ‘food of love’, Tibetan monks were forbidden from entering the monastery after eating garlic because of its tendency to inflame passion, while the Talmud instructed husbands to eat garlic on Friday night because “it promotes love and arouses desire”. Garlic’s reputation as a medicinal food is well-deserved, and it’s easy to grow as well. Try adding cloves of garlic to a pot, planting in fall.
- Strawberries – the numerous tiny seeds have caused strawberries to be regarded as fertility symbols, but nothing is quite as wonderful as a sweet ripe fresh strawberry. Strawberries are wonderful paired with chocolate, another aphrodisiac food. They are also easy to grow even in pots, and are the most popular fruit for home gardeners.
- Honey – Hippocrates recommended honey for sexual vigor. Aphrodisiacs are named for the Greek goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite, and honey is called the ‘nectar of Aphrodite’. Honey not only belongs on a list of wonderful treats for a romantic dinner, I believe that it is something that many urban gardeners should consider raising. Urban beekeeping is a growing passion for many, and feeding your beloved a taste of honey you’ve harvested from your own hive would be even more romantic than buying some from a local apiary.
Happy Valentine’s Day month from all of us at Urban Garden Casual!