Wishing all my friends, family and all the amazing folk I’ve met live and online this year a very happy green year in which things WILL begin to change for the better for our wonderful planet earth!
However, things are not changing for the better for ulluco (Ullucus tuberosus) in the bottom row in this animation as this is the last year I’m growing this wonderfully colourful root crop which I’ve been growing now since 2007 (see the comments below for the reason for this!)
The top two rows are oca (Oxalis tuberosus). Both are from the Andes and were harvested yesterday indoors (grown in large pots brought inside before the first frostsin October).
Animation by my daughter Avellana Hazel
As the psychedelic (colour not effect) Andean tubers Oca (Oxalis tuberosa), Ulluco (Ullucus tuberosus) and Achira (Canna edulis) benefit from a longer season than I can give them outside, I grow them in buckets which I bring inside and harvest around Xmas time for a colourful christmas dinner…so here’s an album of this year’s harvest!
I was very surprised by one of the best ulluco harvests here, despite the leaves being mostly frozen off before moving the pots inside and not regrowing…I don’t understand…
For Xmas dinner 2007, I made nut roast with roast vegetables including two members of the Basellaceae family (known as the Madeira vine family). It contains the following genus: Anredera, Basella, Ullucus and plantlist.org also assigns Tournonia hookeriana (previously Basella) to the same family.
I also cooked some Basella alba (malabar or ceylon spinach) greens to serve with the dinner.
Is this the only time all 3 main members of the Basellaceae have been served together? ;)
I have Malabar spinach (also known as Ceylon spinach or just Basella), a vigorous climbing spinach which isn’t hardy outside here, but grows very well and sets seed every years in an unheated bedroom, this year in my bedroom…should I be worried it might strangle me in its sleep?
It’s in the Basellaceae alongside Madeira Vine (Anredera cordifolia) and Ulluco (Ullucus tuberosus), both of which have both edible tubers and leaves… I actually included all 3 of these in Xmas dinner one year (picture below) :)
Malabar spinach can be harvested here – I usually take a few leaves and mix with other greens – from August right into the depths of winter, a great winter leafy green house plant! This year I have both green (Basella alba) and red-stemmed (Basella alba “Rubra”) varieties growing alongside each other…
I presume that Malabar is the area of southern India where it’s a popular vegetable and I look forward to making Malabar bhaji next time I make an Indian meal!
Ulluco is a colourful root vegetable from the Andes. The tubers are quite small….wild Ulluco tubers (Ullucus tuberosus) which I received today (just for fun!) are even smaller (they do get bigger than these though!)! Two of these originate in Peru (1040 to 1300m), the other from Bolivia.
Two Ulluco cultivars grown in Malvik for Xmas dinner: