Darsham Nurseries Cafe, potager, kitchen garden, vegetables from seed, harvesting vegetables,
The Daily Dibber

Kitchen gardener for the Darsham Nurseries Cafe. Seedaholic. Grower and lover of food and flowers.

La La Land

I’ve been away, well away with the fairies.

The only redeeming quality about mid-January in this climate is the opportunity it presents for a slow, detailed meander through one of my favourite places, the delightful world of seeds.

My glazed eyes have been close competition for my Fifa 17 playing teenage son, peaceful companionship indeed.

It’s been a more than usual pleasure, the English seed companies have greatly extended their range. No major imports are needed (tomatoes will be tackled separately), and I have discovered three interesting new suppliers.

Yields have been analysed, flavour and versatility is needed for the café menu, beauty is a welcome bonus.

I am a big fan of trying new varieties, it’s part of what makes Darsham Nurseries special.

These are my suggestions for 2017:

Chillies.

‘Hungarian Hot Wax’ a mild early fruiter. Suttons Seeds.

‘Red Basque’ vigorous old French variety. Real Seeds.

‘Aci Sivri’ a moderate Turkish heirloom. Chilli Wizards.

‘Guindilla Roja’ from Northern Spain, elongated, medium heat and extremely good fried with garlic! More Veg.

‘Palivec’ a goats horn style chilli from the Czech Republic. Real Seeds.

‘Chenzo’ a compact medium black chilli. Unwins.

‘Sivri Biber’ a Turkish glossy, curvy, fruity but spicy variety. Sounds perfect. Seaspring Seeds.

‘Turkish Snake’ sweet, curly with a kick. Only available by importing, seeds already on the plane headed to Suffolk.

Courgettes.

‘Green & White Patty Pan’, French , cute, worth a go. Real Seeds.

‘Zephyr’ a two tone firm nutty variety.More Veg.

‘Bandit! Award winning, stout stemmed and hardy. Chilterns Seed.

Cucumbers.

‘Armenian Yard Long’ light green, crisp and delicious pickled. ‘More Veg’.

‘Suyo Long’ Chinese heirloom, ribbed, sweet, best for fresh recipes not pickling. More Veg.

‘White Wonder’ an old American large white cucumber, good fresh or pickled. More Veg.

Peppers.

‘Nardello’ an old Italian long fruity pepper, good fried. Plants Of Distinction..

‘Corno di Toro’ Italian, tapered, sweet, great for roasting. Suttons Seeds.

‘Giant Aconcagua’ Cuban, huge sweet fruits, perfect for stuffing. J&L seeds.

‘Semaroh’ from the Czech countryside this early variety has horn shaped fruit and is good fresh or pickled. Real Seeds.

‘Turkish Dolma’ sweet, shaped perfectly for stuffing with high yields. Seaspring Seeds.

Squash.

‘Pink Banana Jumbo’ has to be grown just to see what the dish would be named! Supposed to taste great. Real Seeds.

‘Galeuse d’eysines’, very difficult to source seeds for this French and truly astonishing winter squash. It’s velvety when cooked and stores really well. Many thanks to a newly discovered seed supplier J&L seed

Misc.

‘Chinese Cabbage Scarlette’ wow, oh wow. This can be used as an alternative to autumn radicchio. It’s slightly bitter and utterly beautiful. Plants of Distinction.

Kale ‘Emerald Ice’. If this tastes as good as it looks then it will feature every winter, sitting alongside the ornamental kales. Kings Seeds.

Wonderfully named ‘Lazy Housewife’ a rarely found French bean thats early, prolific, stringless and buttery. Blimey, not so lazy. Real Seeds.

Next project, vertical growing for maximum harvests, cut flowers and interest.

limegarden@sky.com • 17th January 2017


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