Levisticum officinale. Sow some Lovage seeds for the tallest of the garden herbs. Lovage makes a striking accent in any garden, especially when it flowers. It is an umbelliferous plant in the family Apiaceae, which makes it a cousin of the carrot. But this herb is a massive perennial plant that grows 1.8–2.5m (6–8') in a single season. Use the leaves in salads or to make soup or season broths. The flavour is distinctly celery-like. Even the root can be eaten as a vegetable or grated into salads. Give it a corner in your vegetable or herb garden, but one or two plants will be ample. We recommend allowing the plants to bloom, as their flower heads are attractive to a wide range of predatory and beneficial insects. The flowers are followed by seeds that can be harvested and used as a spice, with a flavour similar to fennel seeds.
Lovage is deer resistant, and an important companion plant for the vegetable garden.
Lovage has been used since the time of the ancient Greeks as a remedy for stomach upsets, and to aid digestion. As herbs go, this is a massive plant, so you may only want one or two for your home garden. Follow this handy How to Grow Lovage from seeds guide. The leaves of lovage can part a wonderful meaty flavour to vegetable soups, stews and stocks.