Friday, December 17, 2010

Holy wasabi! Oh, and Merry Christmas

Banksia marginata
My wasabi has been getting a right seeing to from caterpillars. I'm not sure if it's the cabbage white, or a little brown moth that lurks in our brassicas. The critter in question bungy jumps from the  foliage when disturbed, which seems to me a silly strategy as they are easily seen and squished whilst dangling in the air. So I haven't been bringing my plants to market as they are so ugly! But I've given them a little spray with Dipel,  an organically acceptable bacteria which infects only caterpillars that ingest it, which then become paralysed. It would be best used early in the season to prevent the build up in numbers of dubious garden guests. Even though it's ok to use in organic systems I still use this as a last resort and prefer to put up with a little damage and grow my main crops of brassicas in Winter when these greedy creatures aren't about. Anyhow, I'm bring a few slightly nibbled plants to the market this Sunday, they will look wonderful again soon, so get in early if you want one!

And I've fallen victim to the Christmas dilemma. I'm not huge on the commercial side of Christmas, (I LOVE the family and food!) but one important part of being a sustainable business is to be financially sustainable, along with fulfilling environmental and social responsibilities, and people will be buying gifts, and why shouldn't they be lovely plants? So.....

Christmas 6 packs from Provenance Growers!

Not beer, (sadly not my abs!) but lovely combinations of 6 useful plants!

I've put together the following Christmas packs for your loved one's pleasure this year. Stock of some varieties is limited so get in touch if there's something you especially fancy and I'll put it aside for you. I'll be tucking 6 plants from each list into a little box, or make up your own combination from the list on our last post.

Bush tucker combo, Sagg, Lomandra longifolia, edible leaf bases. Flax lily, Dianella revoluta, edible blue berries. Samphire,  Sarcocornia quinqueflora, edible stems. Sea celery, Apium prostratum, edible foliage, similar to parlsey. Warrigal greens, Tetragonia tetraginoides, edible leaves, Pigface, Carpobrotus rossii, edible fruit and foliage. Native pepper, Tasmannia lanceolata, leaves used as a flavouring, spicy when raw, becoming milder with slow cooking, berries used as a seasoning borne only on female plants (our peppers are seed grown so you may get a male or female). Native Bluebell, Wahlenbergia sp, edible flowers. Have a look at this wonderful article for more on some of these plants.

Feast on flowers, Dianthus, borage, chives, Roman chamomile, globe artichoke - French purple, Nasturtium and variegated society garlic.

Tassie native mix, A hardy blend of plants suitable for an average sized garden. Spicy Everlasting, Ozothamnus obcordatus, Myrtle Wattle, Acacia myrtifolia, Bluebottle daisy, Lagenophora stipitata, Silver Banksia, Banksia marginata, Paper Daisy, Xerochrysum spp, White Flag Iris, Diplarrena moraea.

Garlic chives
Tea, Roman chamomile, peppermint, Mexican tarragon, sage, thyme, Moroccan mint.

Unusual herbs, Variegated society garlic, white borage, salad burnett, Angelica archangelica, curly golden oregano, orange peel thyme.

Mints, Peppermint, Moroccan spearmint, variegated pineapple mint, variegated ginger mint, apple mint, common mint, spearmint.

Classic herbs, Italian parsley, garlic chives, thyme, oregano, chives, sage.
Asian mix, Laksa leaves/Vietnamese mint, mitsuba, red shiso, garlic chives, perennial spring onions.

So drop me a line at if you'd like something tucked away with your name on it,  or come down to the biggest market ever, from 9-1, with your green bags, a good appetite (think awesome sushi, cupcakes and real Tassie flour!!) and have some fun with us. And a merry Christmas to you and yours this year!

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