Category Archives: Perennial vegetables

Dandelions in pink, white and yellow

16th May 2024: Dandelions in white, pink and (self-sowed) yellow in the Asian part of the World Garden at the Væres Venner Community Garden in Trondheim. I planted both Taraxacum albidum, Taraxacum leucanthum and Taraxacum pseudoroseum in this part of the garden and suspect these are albidum and pseudoroseum but am not sure. Will post separate albums below showing detailed studies of the pink and white one in case anyone has a key to these (there are several white flowered dandelion species in Asia).

Botanical details of what I’m growing as Taraxacum pseudoroseum in the World Garden at the Væres Venner community garden in Trondheim:

Botanical details of what I’m growing as Taraxacum albidum in the World Garden at the Væres Venner community garden in Trondheim. Anyone have a key to this species?

Soba perennial veg stir-fry

This week’s perennial veg stir-fry with soba (buckwheat noodles), Japanese style contained the following (roughly left to right in the picture):
Nettles / stornesle (Urtica dioica)
Burdock / storborre roots (Arctium lappa); stored in the cellar
Wapato tubers (Sagittaria latifolia); stored in the cellar in water
Ramsons / ramsløk (Allium ursinum)
Caucasian spinach / stjernemelde (Hablitzia tamnoides)
Giant bellflower / storklokke (Campanula latifolia)
Himalayan water creeper (Houttuynia cordata) – reddish shoots
Sand leek / bendelløk (Allium scorodoprasum)
Garlic / hvitløk (Allium sativum)




Snow onion salad

After yesterday’s video post about the snow onion (Allium humile) I had to make a snow onion lunchtime salad, so here it is; see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5mOcQ4aUQVI
Ingredients below the pictures.



Allium humile
(snow onion; snøløk)Crambe maritima (sea kale; strandkål)
Primula veris (cowslip; marianøkleblom); 2 varieties
Allium paradoxum var paradoxum (few-flowered leek); bulbils (NB! DON’T PLANT AS IT IS VERY INVASIVE!)
Ligularia fischeri (gomchwi; Koreansk nøkketunge)
Taraxacum “Vert de Montmagny Ameliore”
Oenanthe javanica (seri)
Allium ovalifolium var. leuconervum
Allium schoenoprasum “Black Isle Blush” (chives; gressløk)
Rumex acetosa (sorrel; engsyre)
Hosta “Urui”
Allium ursinum (ramsons; ramsløk)
Myrrhis odorata (sweet cicely; Spansk kjørvel)
Hablitzia tamnoides (Caucasian spinach; stjernemelde)
Claytonia virginiana (spring beauty)
Taraxacum tortilobum (moss-leaved dandelion; mosebladet løvetann)
Anethum graveolens (dill)
Coriandrum sativum (coriander; coriander)
Allium victorialis (victory onion; seiersløk)
Begonia heracleifolia
Brassica oleracea (perennial kale; flerårig kål)
Allium sativum (garlic; hvitløk) shoots of garlic grown as a perennial.

A video tour of the World Garden

A video tour on my youtube channel showing what’s emerging in The World Garden (Verdenshagen) at the Væres Venner Community Garden in Ranheim, Trondheim, Norway on 7th May 2024. I’ve planted some 160 perennial vegetables here (including mostfrom my book Around the World in 80 plants – signed copies can be ordered from me). The plants are arranged geographically around a 12m diameter circle with the mid-point representing the North Pole and the arctic regions of the world. The garden has been created with support from the KVANN (Norwegian Seed Savers) network Schubelers Hager (see https://kvann.no/schubeler). These are the plants I mention in this video:
Angelica archangelica “Vossakvann” (Voss Angelica)
Urtica (two stingless stinging nettles; brennløs brennesle)
Matteuccia struthiopteris (ostrich fern; strutseving)
Allium angulosum x nutans “Norrland Onion” (Norrlandsløk)
Allium victorialis (victory onion; seiersløk) from naturalised populations in the Lofoten Islands)
Rumex patientia (patience dock; hagesyre)
Artemisia dracunculus sativa “German” (German tarragon; Tysk estragon)
Polygonum bistorta (bistort; ormerot)
Cirsium eriophorum (wooly thistle; ulltistel)
Humulus lupulus “Aureus” (golden hops; gullhumle)
Cirsium oleraceum (cabbage thistle; kåltistel)
Levisticum officinale (lovage; løpstikke)
Allium x cornutum (St. Jansuien; Johannesløk)
Phyteuma spicatum and P. nigra (spiked rampion; vadderot)
Hablitzia tamnoides (Caucasian spinach; stjernemelde)
Rumex acetosa “Champion” (sorrel; engsyre)
Allium stipitatum (Persian shallot; Persisk sjalott)
Allium pskemense x fistulosum “Wietse’s onion” (Wietsesløk)
Rhodiola rosea (roseroot; rosenrot)
Allium fistulosum “Takløk fra Gudbrandsdalen” (roof onion from the Gudbrandsdalen valley; old variety growing on turf roofs)
Arabis alpina (alpine rock cress; fjellskrinneblom)
Hemerocallis (day lilies; dagliljer)
Hosta
Ligularia fischeri “Cheju Charmer” (gomchwi; Koreansk nøkketunge)
Cryptotaenia japonica “Atropurpurea” (purple mitsuba)
Aralia cordata (udo)
Ligularia fischeri “Himalayan accession”
Allium senescens or nutans (or hybrid)
Arctium lappa (greater burdock; storborre)
Taraxacum pseudoroseum (pink flowered dandelion; rosablomstret løvetann)
Hemerocallis middendorfii
Secale cerale x montanum “Mountaineer” (perennial rye; flerårige rug)
Allium douglasii (Douglas’ onion; Douglas-løk)
Allium cernuum “Alan Kapuler” (nodding onion; prærieløk); wild collected by Kapuler on the coast of Oregon
Camassias
Allium cernuum “Major” (nodding onion; prærieløk)
Maianthemum racemosum “Emily Moody” (false spikenard; toppkonvall)
Oenanthe javanica (seri)
Sagittaria latifolia (wapato)
Urtica dioica subsp gracilis (California nettle)
Agastache foeniculum “Aureum” (golden anise hyssop; anisisop)
Hydrophyllum tenuipes (Pacific waterleaf)
Allium x proliferum “Catawissa” (walking onion; etasjeløk)
Rudbeckia laciniata “Hortensia” (cutleaf coneflower; gjerdesolhatt, Kyss-meg-over-gjerde)
Tradescantia occidentalis (prairie spiderwort)
Crambe maritima (sea kale; strandkål)

The Full Gap

I used to call it the Hungry Gap (Vårknipen), but transitioning to a large proportion of perennials this is the time I now call the Full Gap! The vegetables were quickly stir-fried in olive oil and added to a 100% whole grain rye, emmer and spelt quiche (eggepai).
These were the veggies I harvested for last night’s dinner (names below). Taraxacum sp.  dandelion / løvetann
Hablitzia tamnoides  Caucasian spinach / stjernemelde
Cichorium intybus chicory / sikkori (2 cellar forced Witloof type cultivars, one purple leaved, the other green)
Allium cernuum nodding onion / prærieløk
Allium fistulosum  Welsh onion / pipeløk
Allium x proliferum  walking onion / luftløk
Allium paradoxum One flowered leek
Dystaenia takesimana  Seombadi;  giant Korean celery / Ulleung kjempeselleri
Allium sativum  garlic / hvitløk (shoot from a stand grown as a perennial)
Aegopodium podograria  ground elder / skvallerkål
Hemerocallis middendorfii
Campanula latifolia 
giant bellflower / storklokke
Allium ochotense oriental victory onion / orientalsk seiersløk
Myrrhis odorata  sweet cicely / Spansk kjørvel
Allium hymenorrhizum



Hablitzia beginnings

If I’m asked what my favourite perennial vegetable is, I will struggle to only mention one (I wrote a book about my 80 favourites after all), but the one I will mention most frequently is the Caucasian spinach (Hablitzia tamnoides) as it has an interesting history, it was discovered as an edible plant in Scandinavia and remained a closely kept secret here until the 2000s, it provides the first spring greens together with various Alliums , its productive and probably grows best in cold climates!
This video describes how I discovered this amazing vegetable and its history in Scandinavia and in particular the role Swedish author Lena Israelsson played!
The video can be seen here: HABLITZIA BEGINNINGS

Daniil and the duck potatoes

We like to give our helpers /wwoofers an experience to remember.
Daniil Titov is with us for two weeks and in between the sleet showers we harvested the wapato/duck potato (Sagittaria latifolia), originally from the Mississippi River :)

Meanwhile in the Onion Garden Chicago

I don’t often post here about my other two gardens, the community garden at Væres Venner and the Onion Garden Chicago at the Ringve Botanical Garden in Trondheim. 
The onion garden is nicely maturing and will be officially opened this summer on 26th August, 6 years since I started work creating a garden to house a national collection of old Norwegian perennial vegetable onions collected throughout the country, some 100 botanical species from around the world and many cultivars too!
Here’s a couple of videos showing the garden on 25th June 2023 close to peak flowering, although there will be flowering Alliums all the way from May to the first heavy frosts in October / November!
Tasty, beautiful and a great place to study pollinators! Can you smell it?
There are now over 500 pictures from the garden in this large Facebook album 

Hablitzia, Laportea and Nettle Gnocchi

What to do with the very last Sarpo Mira potatoes from the cellar? Last night’s dinner was Gnocchi made with Hablitzia leaf, Laportea canadensis (Canadian wood nettle tops) and stinging nettle tops. I must admit that our first attempt turned into a gnocchi soup, so we had a starter with exactly the same ingredients as the main course :) The second attempt was excellent though!

Hablitzia tamnoides leaves:

Canadian wood nettle (Laportea canadensis); the tops of the stems can also be used:
Making the gnocchi (potato used instead of grain for pasta):