Epazote, Mexican Tea. Mexican cooks have long known that cooking beans with the herb epazote adds an unusual and delicious flavor and aids in their digestion (reducing the gas they often cause). Warning: Epazote spreads its seeds easily so it can pop up all over the garden. Rebuttal: In my urban garden, I just pull the plants I don’t want.


Dysphania ambrosioides. Epazote, wormseed, Jesuit’s tea, Mexican tea, Paico or Herba Sancti Mariæ (Dysphania ambrosioides, formerly Chenopodium ambrosioides) is an herb native to Central America, South America, and southern Mexico. It is an annual or short-lived perennial plant (herb), growing to 1.2 m (3.9 ft) tall, irregularly branched, with oblong-lanceolate leaves up to 12 cm (4.7 in) long. The flowers are small and green, produced in a branched panicle at the apex of the stem.


Family: Amaranthaceae

Genus: Dysphania (dis-FAY-nee-a) (Info)

Species: ambrosioides (am-bro-zhee-OH-id-eez) (Info)

Synonym:Chenopodium ambrosioides







36-48 in. (90-120 cm)



24-36 in. (60-90 cm)



USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)


Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Seed is poisonous if ingested

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction


Bloom Color:

Pale Green


Bloom Time:

Mid Summer



Grown for foliage


Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season


Soil pH requirements:

4.6 to 5.0 (highly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

over 9.1 (very alkaline)


Patent Information:



Propagation Methods:

From seed; sow indoors before last frost


Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Wear gloves to protect hands when handling seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


Read more: http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/51558/#ixzz3GYVZqdj2

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