Monday, 9 December 2013

Nothing ventured, nothing gained

Left to my own devices, and with space not an issue, I might venture to grow pumpkin, and potato, and yam, and cabbage. However, space is at a premium, and the household is not a fan of the three veggies mentioned. So, adventures are of a herbal variety.

Kale, I gather, is a bit like cabbage, and a bit like spinach, and good for the garden soil. To quote the label:
Kale is a sweet tasting leafy vegetable, that is high in Vitamins C and K, antioxidants, and betacarotene. All parts of the plant are edible, and the more it is picked, the more it will produce. The leaves make a great side-dish tossed in the wok with some garlic, Thai Basil, and Soy Sauce.
Hence, the next choice was Thai Basil. Actually, we went to Bunnings for Thai Basil to begin with. We fluked a Kaffir Lime tree in the backyard which, I gather, is essential for authentic Thai flavours, and the Thai Basil was in a recipe Kirsten wanted to try out. Perhaps, I can encourage her to post this recipe, in her copious free time, of course. The Thai Basil label opines:
Attractive and delicious variety of Basil with aromatic, dark, green leaves, smelling of spicy Aniseed. A fantastic herb for flavouring Thai dishes, such as curries and stir-fries. Best used when freshly picked to ensure maximum fragrance is retained. Prefers regular watering. Remove flower heads as they occur to encourage leaf growth.
Which brings me to my third brain-snap, Vietnamese Mint, which was requested by noone and was simply plucked from the shelf like low-hanging fruit. It is not even a real mint, but I will let the label speak for itself:
This is not a true mint, but has a similar appearance and aroma. The pointed leaves have distinctive purple markings. Prefers rich, moist soil in a partially shaded position. Flavour is pungent and spicy, and a bit like Coriander. Use in salads, soups, stews, and laksa soups.
Mmmm ... the the rich, moist, shaded spot will be a challenge. I wonder if it will team well with Coriander, which I have finally had success with having moved it into a shadier spot.
Once these three plants are 'flourishing', I will update the images together with my thoughts on how to grow each such that it thrives.


Margaret said...

Glad to see your Coriander is doing well.
Don Burke got together with some other knowledgable horticulturalists and did some trials, what they came up with was, Coriander doesn't like to grow here, it usually goes to seed quickly and the only way to get an ongoing supply is to replant a few seeds every 3 or 4 weeks if you use a constant supply.
Great to see the rest of the garden is coming along well and harvesting will soon improve with the warm gowing season.

Julie said...

I have a similar issue with sweet basil - goes to seed quickly, and I need a rotation of plants every, say, 8 weeks.