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Hablitzia Tamnoides – how to grow

Hablitzia Tamnoides - Caucasian Spinach leaf

Hablitzia Tamnoides is a semi shade loving perennial climber with mild edible spinach type leaves. Originating in the Caucasus region, it has been grown in Scandinavian countries as an ornamental before making a bit of a renaissance recently by author and plant expert Stephen Barstow. Now permaculturists and forest gardeners as well as those interested in perennial vegetables are beginning to give it a try as another possible staple that can happily grow in any garden with a shady spot. The young shoots can be eaten in early spring as well as pickings from the more mature leaves over the summer. Hablitzia seeds need a period of cold to germinate. Sow outside in a cold frame over the winter or sow in spring and place in the fridge for 10 days to trigger germination. Continue reading Hablitzia Tamnoides – how to grow

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How to grow Borage

Vibrant edible flower salad with Borage and Calendula petals

How to grow Borage: Article first published in Grow Your Own Magazine September 2015 growfruitandveg.co.uk

My vegetable garden is a beautiful rambling polyculture where edible and beneficial plants happily co-exist. Bee friendly plants, edible flowers and aromatic companions happily nestle alongside my perennial and annual vegetables. This way of growing helps deter pests, maximizes your growing space and leaves less bare earth for the weeds – occupied by useful plants instead.
I first started growing the medicinal herb Borage, Borago Officinalis for its amazing vivid sky blue clusters of star shaped edible flowers to add to my salads. Continue reading How to grow Borage

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How to Grow Cardoons

Perennial Cardoon plants with purple thistle flowers

How to grow Cardoons – article first published in Grow Your Own Magazine May 2015 growfruitandveg.co.uk

Cardoons are fantastic edible, ornamental and bee friendly plants. I’m obsessed with resurrecting long forgotten varieties and started growing Cardoons 6 years ago after discovering they were stars of the vegetable garden in Britain right up to Victorian times. I thought it was time for these architectural edimentals to make a re-appearance.

Continue reading How to Grow Cardoons

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Skirrets – the long forgotten vegetable

Freshly harvested skirret root grown from Skirret seed

OUR SKIRRETS WERE FEATURED ON BBC TWO’S GARDENERS’ WORLD WITH MONTY PLANTING OUT OUR SKIRRET CROWNS IN HIS TUDOR VEGETABLE GARDEN. More info here BBC Gardeners World. Latin name Sium Sisarum, Skirrets are hardy perennial root vegetables. They date back centuries, pre-dating the potato, and were one of the main root crops eaten across Europe before potatoes were introduced. They fell out of favour because potatoes were easier to prepare, not because of the taste. Skirrets actually taste somewhere between a Parsnip and a carrot with a hint of pepper. Continue reading Skirrets – the long forgotten vegetable

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Chinese Artichokes – How to grow

Amazing edible Chinese Artichoke tubers against the dark earth

Chinese Artichokes are also known as Chorogi, Betony or Crosne. They are prolific producers of delicious knobbly crunchy tubers and have a bushy top growth of fuzzy leaves that grow up to 50cm tall. They are related to the mint family. BUY NOW  in our online shop.

How to grow Chinese Artichokes

Being hardy things tubers can be planted out between October and April. Alternatively you can keep your tubers in trays or pots of slightly damp compost in a light place and leave them to sprout. You will see leaves appearing and when the plants are about 3 or 4 inches tall you can plant them out. Slugs do like the plants when small, so getting them going in pots first ensures that they can survive pests until they have got established. Plant about 25cm apart and a 7.5cm deep in rows of 45cm. Continue reading Chinese Artichokes – How to grow