Perennial Kales at the Walsall Road Allotments, Birmingham

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The perennial kale on the plot of an Indian man. He had been given it by the Kenyan! These perennial kales resembled “Taunton Deane
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Another possibly perennial kale
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The perennial kale on the plot of an Indian man. He had been given it by the Kenyan!
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The perennial kale on the Indian plot
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The perennial kales on the Kenyan plot
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The perennial kales on the Kenyan plot

In my book, there’s a section reviewing surviving perennial kales and I mention that the only country in the world where perennial kales are still cultivated commercially is Kenya.  Visiting the multi-ethnic Walsall Road allotments in Birmingham in October 2015, the first plot I saw had several perennial kales and the plot owner was from Kenya. My immediate thought was that perhaps these were Kenyan. I commented at the time that they looked like Taunton Deane, the only surviving UK perennial kale from Devon.

After some investigating afterwards it turns out that our guide at Walsall Road, Betty, had given cuttings to the Kenyan. She had received them from someone called Anja as Daubenton perennial kale.  I contacted Anja and she told me that she had been under the impression that perennial kales in general were known (collectively) as Daubentons…  Further, she had been given this kale as Taunton Deane by the head gardener from Knightshayes Court Walled Kitchen Garden and that they also called it Daubenton kale! This reminded me of the final picture here which I took at Knightshayes Court in 2011, explaining why these two labels were placed together!

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A picture I took at Knightshayes Court in 2011…

 

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