Food traditions are vital in binding us together as families and as communities. From our very first mouthful, food deeply connects us to other humans. It connects us to our parents and grandparents, connects us to our friends, and can connect us to our children in how we share our food knowledge, habits and values with them.
You won’t find many homes in the inner city that have intentionally shrunk to make way for a larger garden, but that’s what happened behind a bright red door in Northcote, Melbourne.
The humble carrot may be easy and cheap to buy, but the absolute pleasure of picking a few fresh carrots to crunch on straight from your garden and the taste sensation you will receive are well worth the investment of your time.
Learning how to grow mushrooms from scratch is a little bit like learning a magic trick. And yet once you have the basic skills and principles sorted out, it’s really very doable.
March: Brussels sprouts (seedling tray), broad beans, beetroot, broccoli (seedling tray), cabbage (seedling tray), carrot, chives, coriander, daikon, endive, fennel, kale, kohlrabi, leeks, lettuce, mizuna, mustard greens, pak choy/ bok choy, radish, rocket, shallots (plant bulbs), silverbeet, turnips. April: Brussels sprouts, broad beans, beetroot, broccoli, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, chives, endive, fennel, garlic (plant cloves), kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, mizuna, mustard greens, onions, pak choy/bok choy, parsley, peas, radish, rocket, shallots (plant bulbs), silverbeet, spinach, turnip.
Basil flowers are coloured white through to purple. They have an abundant and pungent nectar, and rely on insect pollination, so one basil will cross with others. You will need to separate different varieties by as much garden space as possible (preferably fifty metres).
Oxalis is of the Oxalidaceae family which has over 850 different species worldwide, with about 30 species in Australia, seven of these native. A number of species are grown as ornamental plants. Oxalis is from the Greek oksos meaning sour, referring to the taste of the leaves and stems.
Mention bees and people invariably think of the European honey bee, Apis mellifera. However, this species is only one of 20 000 species of bees worldwide. Australia is home to about 2000 species of native bees and most of them are very important plant pollinators.
Broad beans (Vicia faba) are prized as much for their fleshy beans as they are for their potential use as a nitrogen-fixing cover crop. This ancient food of early Mediterranean civilisations is still widely cultivated across the world today. Sometimes known as ‘fava beans’ (fava from the Latin word for bean), they’re a popular staple across the Middle East and Africa, and are commonly eaten as a snack across virtually every continent.
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