May 31st, 2011


Tropaeoleum Speciosum!

 Sounds like a Harry Potter spell, but is actually an obscure perennial relative of the nasturtian.  Although the seeds are widely sold, it has a reputation as a wilful plant, where success depends less on skill and devotion, and more on imponderables such as whether it likes you and whether the appropriate songs were sung when the seed was harvested.  Possibly you need to sacrifice a virgin. 

I have tried growing it from seed, but never had any luck (clearly all the mice that the cats bring in have far too much sexual experience), but much to my excitement, my Mum has bought me a growing specimen in a pot.   I have just planted it reverently in a shady, leaf-mould-rich spot, of the kind it is rumoured to favour.  Now to find out if it likes me... 

There was a fabulous smell in my greenhouse this evening.  All the strawberries were ripe.   I really must put more strawberry plants in there, a greenhouse entirely filled with early strawberries would be a marvelous thing.  Maybe also some basil.