Discover the Secret of Medieval Gardens Beauty and Benefits

Gaelle DGSage
3 min readFeb 22
Photo by the author

A homemade pharmacy

In Europe, and particularly France, Medieval Gardens contained basic aromatic plants such as rosemary, sage, thyme and savoury, but also sweet bay and sweet myrtle. The purpose of these gardens was to always find what nature was providing. These herbs were an excellent way to spice up basic meals, but they were also powerful healers.

Thyme is called the “antibiotic of the poor”; lavender is renowned for calming down the upset mind and peaceful sleep; savoury soothes gastric issues and helps with digestion. Each of these herbs had valuable healing properties. Flowers were also part of the pharmacy. Lavender for a start, but also rue even though it can become toxic when handled. This shows, once more, that medieval garden owners had to make with what nature gave in a certain area. Although rue is challenging to handle, it is a powerful ally against digestion issues, as well as help with abortion.

A source of food for the humble village priest or the monasteries communities

If pharmacies were nowhere to be seen, then, supermarkets waited even longer to appear in the streets. Local markets were already in place, but only in the biggest cities. It was common to have veggies and fruits growing in backyards, and Medieval gardens were no exception. They were a place to grow food for the clergy community as fruits and vegetables are filled with nutrients. You would often find a cherry or lemon tree in the middle of the gardens. The tree would provide shade, a water source, and protection from the cold in the wintertime to the smaller plants. In turn, these plants would protect bigger trees, helping create a safe environment to grow strong.

A pleasure for the senses

Aromatherapy existed for 3500 years BC. Flowers and herbs provided a place to awaken smell and sight, as well as touch. These medieval garden where not only a source of medicine and food. They provided a safe place to witness beauty. Chromotherapy is proven to help patient recovery. If not all plants are edible, their smell itself can be a source of healing for the body and the soul. Landing eyes on something beautiful was already soothing, and…

Gaelle DGSage

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