Ligularia hodgsonii is a new edimental I’m trialling in a very shady part of the garden…ornamentally speaking it complements the 4-5 other species of Ligularias I’m growing by flowering later! It is used as a wild foraged vegetable in the Far East. It is closely related to L. dentata.
A few months ago, I found an Excel file with a complete list of ingredients in my 537 plant species (including varieties) unofficial world record salad from 2003. I thought it was lost! I decided then to publish the list on the 15th Anniversary which is TODAY!! So, here is the list for the first time on the world wide web (see below)!
See also http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=294
To celebrate, the students of the PDC course I’m teaching on in Hurdal this week made a 15 species salad with the number 15 written in flowers:
A little composition put together last night together with my daughter and artist friend from UK and wwoofer Kristina from Czech…including Allium macranthum (centerpiece), Allium carinatum pulchellum “Album”, Allium flavum, various Hosta flowers, tiger lily flower, Fedia, Adenophora, mallows, chicory leaf etc.
The most successful of the half dozen Phyteuma species I’ve tried in my garden has been a plant received as Phyteuma nigrum (syn. Phyteuma spicatum ssp nigrum), black rampion or (Norwegian) svartvadderot. It has much darker flowers than Phyteuma spicatum, sometimes almost black. I planted it from seed propagated plants in 2003 and this picture is from 2006-2007:
It has self-sowed freely and seems to have crossed with other accessions of Phyteuma spicata with white and blue (ssp. caeruleum) flowers that I have in my garden (these have not self-sowed much) as there is now a mix of colours in the original spot I planted nigrum. Phyteuma spicatum/nigra is also the most popular bee plant in my garden in mid-June and a great edimental (one of the edi-entomentals, plants combining food, ornament as well as good for bees and other pollinators!). Phyteuma spicatum (rapunsel) is a very old root vegetable in Europe, mentioned already in Gerard’s Herball from 1597, but best known as a vegetable in France and Germany! The name rapunsel is related to rapa (turnip) due to its use as a root vegetable!
See my blog post from 23rd June 2017 with pictures and video of black rampion: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=11910
I tried Phyteuma spicatum as a root vegetable in 2013 and was struck by its good sweetish taste:
I harvested a lot of plants this week (late July 2018) while remaking the bed where it was growing and was impressed by the good size of roots and yields, although it is unknown how old the individual plants were (I plan to grow some of the smaller plants elsewhere to see how quickly they grow in a shady area of the garden, as this could be a good forest garden plant, although, like Jerusalem artichoke, plants in the Campanulaceae to which Phyteuma belongs, contain the diabetic friendly but poorly digestable carbohydrate inulin):
The flower heads can also be used as a vegetable, reminiscent of Bath Asparagus flower heads (Ornithogalum pyrenaicum) see the picture from its wiki page:
I saw the plant in the wild for the first time in Austria in the Alps on my Arche Noah tour in 2017 (see http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=11483), the white flowered form, growing in open woodlands.
In Norway, it grows wild a few places in southern Norway and has also naturalised in parks, including the great garden at Baroniet Rosendal (see the video and pictures at http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=15680). It is also found in the far north of Norway in Finnmark where it naturalised during World War II, introduced by the Germans with horse forage!
The name rapunsel is related to rapa (turnip) due to its use as a root vegetable!
On the other hand oriental hybrids “are based on hybrids within Lilium section Archelirion,specifically Lilium auratum and Lilium speciosum, together with crossbreeds from several species native to Japan, including Lilium nobilissimum, Lilium rubellum, Lilium alexandrae, and Lilium japonicum. They are fragrant, and the flowers tend to be outward facing. Plants tend to be tall, and the flowers may be quite large. The whole group are sometimes referred to as “stargazers” because many of them appear to look upwards”
I’ve never tasted hybrid lilies, but maybe I should as two of the asiatics and all the 6 oriental species involved are eaten in Japan…most importantly L.auratum which is cultivated for markets on a field scale, the others mainly foraged I think! I wonder if anyone has hybridised lilies for food rather than beauty….an interesting project for someone perhaps?
An old stone wall collapsed below the house in the winter on top of one of my Crambe cordifolia (ornamental sea kale / buskstrandkål) plants….well, it bounced back through the rubble bigger and better…here in full flower!
I visited my son today on Nesodden (Oslo) and was impressed by how much growth his Hablitzia had put on and then I noticed that one of the stems had variegated leaves…I’m not sure if this is the same plant as the stems with normal leaves…will try to check on my next visit!