A strawberry that has Mara Des Bois and Gariguette, both highly reputed for flavour, in its heritage has a lot to live up to. Unfortunately for Manille, despite what the catalogues will tell you it is simply not in the same league. It lacks the intense flavour of both and on the sharp side if picked…
For most vegetable varieties grown by amateurs, choosing the wrong variety or growing them incorrectly causes only short term annoyance, easily remedied and a lesson learned for next year.
Not so with asparagus. If I were to say to you that building an asparagus bed takes as much effort as a planning a wedding I wouldn’t be far wrong.
My memories of Greek and Turkish holidays often revolve around foods that we ate. Especially wonderful were the meze, small plates of tasty bites to share.
The tomato and potato breeder Tom Wagner is responsible for some of our more unusual tomato plants including Green Zebra. Dancing with Smurfs is another that got tongues wagging at my local allotment.
What do you get if you cross a Butternut and a Crown Prince………?
Lumpy, bumpy and decidedly funky. Like a spaceship wrapped multicoloured silk, Turks Turban is the Salvador Dali of the cucurbit world.
Winter is usually thought to be the time to hunker down on the allotment, to eat root vegetables carefully stored, preserves or the rugged green brassicas the only green vegetables to survive the cold.
Opinion is divided about James Wong the Kew trained botanist, writer and broadcaster. James is famous for books covering how to grow unusual or extraordinary things or how to grow every day things in a slightly different way using cutting edge research.
I nearly cried when I saw a neighbour displaying these in their front garden for Halloween, probably to be discarded once the frost had turned them to mush. What a waste of one of the best tasting squashes you can grow.
Purple Top Milan is a heritage vegetable seed first developed in the 1880’s and still extremely popular. It has a slightly squat appearance but a wonderful pinky purple top fading to cream. It also has a good flavour.