In Production Today: October 2014

grafted Mulberry, Morus alba var laevigata 'White Shahtoot' - 8Brisbane’s warm, dry, breezy inter-season, sprummer, (the period between spring and summer) is intensifying, hastening the production of seed from winter crops. The seed of Ethiopian cabbage (Brassica carinata), Chinese cabbage ‘Tokyo Bekana‘, mizuna, flowering turnip (aka rapini, Brassica rapa var rapa ‘Cima di Rapa Quarantina’) and mustard ‘Osaka Purple’ have already been harvested.

I’ve allowed Miner’s Lettuce (Claytonia perfoliata, syn. Montia perfoliata) to self-sow, I’d welcome this as an edible, gap-filling  ‘weed’. Coriander and edible chrysanthemum seed are ripening and Italian flat-leaved parsley has started flowering. These three flowers are highly attractive to a variety of beneficial insects.

As I water, I help myself to common white mulberry,White Shahtoot (a non-seedy cultivar) and jaboticaba.

If there’s anything here you fancy trying yourself, join the Seed Savers Network. Our seed is free to our members! If you want to buy seed or plants listed here, refer to my blog ‘Where do I get seed for that plant?’.

Here’s my subtropical food garden’s sprummer menu:

Edible roots
Arrowroot, Canna edulis
Beetroot, Beta vulgaris ‘McGregor’s Favourite’
Cassava, Manihot esculenta
Cassava, Manihot esculenta ‘Variegata’
Cocoyam, Xanthosoma saggitifolia
Jerusalem artichoke, Helianthus tuberosus ‘Dwarf Sunray’
Mangelwurzel, Beta vulgaris Crassa Group
Radish, Raphanus sativus ‘Palestinian’

Edible leaves
Basil, sacred, Ocimum tenuiflorum
Cassava, Manihot esculenta
Cassava, Manihot esculenta ‘Variegata’
Celery stem taro, aka Tahitian spinach, Alocasia esculenta
Cha-plu, Piper sarmentosum
Chickweed, Stellaria media
Chicory, Cichorium intybus
Chicory, Cichorium intybus ‘Red Dandelion’
Chinese celery, aka smallage, Apium graveolens
Chinese spinach, Amaranthus tricolor
Chinese spinach, Amaranthus tricolor ‘Mekong Red’
Chives, Allium schoenoprasum
Coriander, Coriandrum sativum
Coriander, Thai, Eryngium foetidum
Cranberry Hibiscus, Hibiscus acetosella
Curry bush, Helichrysum italicum
Curry leaf, Murraya koenigii
Dandelion, Taraxacum officinale
Dill, Anethum graveolens
Edible Chrysanthemum, aka Shungiku, Glebionis coronarium (syn. Chrysanthemum coronarium)
Endive, Cichorium endivia ‘Pancellari Fine Cut’
Eschallot, Allium cepa var. aggregatum
Fennel, Florence, Foeniculum vulgare Azoricum Group ‘Zefa-Fino’
Fennel, Bronze, Foeniculum vulgare ‘Purpureum’
Garlic, wet neck, Allium sativum
Garlic chives, Allium tuberosum
Green Amaranth, Amaranthus viridis
Huauzontle, Chenopodium berlandieri
Japanese parsley, Cryptotaenia japonica
Kaffir lime, Citrus hystrix
Kale, Brassica oleracea ‘Red Russian’
Kohl Rabi, Brassica oleracea gongyloides group ‘Purple Vienna’
Lagos spinach, Celosia spicata
Landcress, Barbarea vulgaris
Lebanese cress, Aethionema coridifolium
Leek, multiplier, Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum
Lemongrass, Cymbopogon citratus
Lemongrass, Native, Cymbopogon flexuosus
Lettuce, Lactuca sativa ‘First Fleet’
Lettuce, Lactuca sativa ‘Royal Purple Oakleaf’
Mangelwurzel, Beta vulgaris Crassa Group
Marjoram, Origanum marjorana
Mexican tree spinach, Cnidoscolus aconitifolius
Mint, Corsican, Mentha requienii
Mint, Nan & Grandad’s variety, Mentha sp.
Mint, native, Mentha satureoides
Mint, Moroccan, Mentha spicata
Mustard, Brassica juncea ‘Red’
Nasturtium, Tropaeolum majus
Old man saltbush, Atriplex nummularia
Onion, Tree or Egyptian Walking, Allium x proliferum
Onion, Welsh, or spring onion, aka scallion, Allium fistulosum
Onion, Welsh perennial, or perennial spring onion, aka scallion, Allium fistulosum
Pandan, Pandanus amaryllifolius
Parsley, Petroselenium crispum ‘Italian flat-leaved’
Purslane, Wild, Portulaca oleracea
Radicchio, Cichorium intybus
Rocket, Wall or wild, Eruca saliva
Silverbeet, Beta vulgaris cicla ‘Rainbow Mixed’
Society garlic, Tulbaghia violacea ‘Variegata’
Society garlic, Tulbaghia violacea ‘Fairy Stars’
Stinking Roger, Tagetes minuta
Sweetpotato, Ipomoea batatas ‘Ace of Spades’
Sweetpotato, Ipomoea batatas ‘Marguerite’
Swinecress, Coronopus didymus
Thyme, Variegated, Thymus serpyllum ‘Variegata’
Variegated four seasons herb, Plectranthus amboinicus ‘Variegatus’
Variegated four seasons herb, Plectranthus amboinicus ‘Bayside Beauty’
Vietnamese mint, Persicaria odorata (recovering well from winter!)
Warrigal greens, Tetragonia tetragonioides
Watercress, Nasturtium officinale

Edible petals
Banana, Musa x sapientum ‘Java Blue’
Banana, Musa x sapientum ‘Pisang Ceylan’
Bedding Begonia, Begonia semperflorens
Cranberry Hibiscus, Hibiscus acetosella (excellent for tea)
Fig-marigold, Aptenia cordifolia
Goldenrod, Solidago sp.
Pansy, Viola tricolor ‘Johnny Jump Up’
Rocket, Wall or wild, Eruca sativa
Stinking Roger, Tagetes minuta
Zucchini, Cucumis pepo ‘Blackjack’
Zucchini, Cucumis pepo ‘Goldrush’

Edible seed
Chilean wine palm, Jubaea chilensis
Pigeon pea, Cajanus cajan

Banana (green), Musa x sapientum ‘Java Blue’
Chilli, Capsicum annuum ‘Portuguese Peri Peri’
Chilli, Capsicum annuum ‘Siam Gold’
Jaboticaba, Myrciaria cauliflora
Kaffir lime, Citrus hystrix
Lime, Tahitian, Citrus x latifolia
Mulberry, white, Morus alba
Mulberry, White Shahtoot, Morus alba var. laevigata ‘White Shahtoot’
Pawpaw, Carica papaya ‘Southern Red’
Pepino, Solanum muricatum
Tomato, Cherry, Lycopersicon esculentum ‘Sweetbite’

Medicinal / Spices
Aloe vera – leaf juice used to heal sunburn, scratches, and for shampoo;
Bulbine frutescens – leaf juice used to treat burns, rashes, as an infusion for sore throats;
Brahmi herb, Bacopa monnieri – aids cognitive function;
Cardamom, Eletteria cardamomum;
Cardamom, False, Alpinia nutans;
Galangal, Alpinia galangal – spice used like ginger with similar properties;
Ginger, Culinary, Zingiber officinalis – spice that helps decongestion of catarrh, aids digestion, blood flow;
Ginger, Shampoo (species unknown) – from Seed Savers. Juice from leaves and roots (rhizomes) used to wash hair;
Greater celandine, Chelidonium majus – stem juice kills warts on hands;
Herb Robert, Geranium robertianum – juice used to heal wounds, relieve toothache, staunch bleeding;
Krachai (root), Boesenbergia rotunda;
Rosemary, dwarf, Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Benenden Blue’;
Rosemary, fastigiate, Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Miss Jessopp’;
Skullcap, Scutellaria lateriflora (young seedlings);
Turmeric, Curcuma longa – spice with anti-cancer properties;

97 taxa

Jerry Coleby-Williams
23rd October 2014


3 Comments Add yours

  1. helen says:

    Jerry I am wondering if you have many blue banded bees at Bellis at the moment, I live in Manly and usually when the Patrea is flowering it attracts lots of these and this year, none, Have you any ideas?


    1. There’s no shortage of blue banded bees in my garden. Maybe your bees have found something more to their liking this season.

      1. helen says:

        Maybe they have all gone to Bellis, can’t say I blame them, have just planted more blue salvia to try and attract them back!


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