At the moment meadowsweet is flowering in all the damp, wet pastures and along the damper hedgerows. As it’s name suggests it has an amazing sweet aroma – which unfortunately I can’t share with you.
It was once used by monks to sweeten mead, hence the name meadowsweet. Though it also has may traditional medicine uses. It’s a naturally anti-inflammatory and contains salicylic acid (main constituent of aspirin). A few years ago we dried some of the flowers and made a tea, which has a very pleasant taste. I have recently come across a recipe for a cordial (http://www.irishexaminer.com/lifestyle/outdoors/gardening/meadowsweet-ripe-for-picking-and-brewing-239939.html) and read that it was used to flavour vinegars, jams and stewed fruits.