The herb garden

Herbs for cooking, medicine and plant dyes

The herb garden

The word 'garden' means a hedged piece of land, set aside for cultivating edible herbs, amongst other things. In the town, people used to have gardens and livestock too. Ribe Viking Centre's herb garden is based on archaeological finds of seeds and pollen dating back to antiquity, the stomach contents of bog bodies and analyses of human stools.

Besides this, a number of plants have been included which were typically grown by monks, as we know that there were already monks in Ribe in the Viking Age. So in the herb garden you will find a selection of the cultivated and wild plants that the Vikings probably used for cooking, as medicines and as plant dyes.

The herbs

Chickweeds (Stellaria media)
Horsebeans (Vicia faba)
Hops (Humulus lupulus)
Garlic (Allium sativum)
Cress (Lepidium sativum)
Mallow (Malva sylvestris)
Caraway (wild) (Carrum carvi)
Coriander (Coriandrum sativum)
Cabbage (Brassica)
Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata)
Field peas (Pisum arvense)
Marjoram (Origanum majorana)
Mint (field) (Mentha arvensis)
Red Orache (Atriplex hortensis)
Ramson (Allium ursinum)
Strawberry (Fragaria vesca)
Mustard, white (Sinapis alba)
Sorrel (Rumex acetosa)
Thyme, (Thymus serpyllum)

Plant dye

Woad (Isatis tinctoria)
Heather (Calluna vulgaris)
Scentless Mayweed (Matricaria perforata)
Greater knapweed (Centaurea scabiosa)
Madder (Rubia tinctorum)
Tansy, commong (Tanacetum vulgare)
Bedstraw (hedge) (Galium mollugo)
Weld (Farvereseda) (Reseda luteola)
Soapwort (Saponaria officinalis)

Medicine plants

Burdoch (Arctium lappa)
Vervain (Verbena officinalis)
Ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea)
Mayweed, (Camomilla recutita)
Wormwood (Artemisia absinthium)
St John's wort (Hypericum perforatum)
Yarrow (Archillea millefolium)
Marsh mallow (Althea officinalis)
Opium poppy (Papaver somniferum)
Ribwort Plantain (Plantago laneolata)