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Forget Pride and Prejudice – think Sense and Sensibility


This photo shows two trays of cut and come again salad leaves. One of them is Mizuna lettuce. The other is a super-food. You’ll have heard of it but before I tell you what it is, let me tell you how nutritious it is.

It’s an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin K. It also contains vitamin E folate and small amounts of other B vitamins. It contains iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium and fibre. It has beneficial anti-oxidants; beta carotene and polyphenols that protect against cellular damage.

It has a mild peppery flavour and works especially well in salads with balsamic vinegar. I sowed some seeds of it a few weeks ago into this seed tray and am looking forward to harvesting its leaves all year round; forever. Yes, a cut and come again salad leaf that’s perennial.

You don’t have to spray it with anything because pests don’t eat it and diseases don’t bother it either. Every part of the plant is edible and nutritious – even the flowers and roots.

However, you won’t find packets of seeds of this super plant in garden centres and nurseries. They don’t sell them. They don’t have to, every garden in the country has this plant growing already. The seeds I sowed were free and easy to collect.

The reason you haven’t eaten this plant before is prejudice.

In the past, whole generations have been taught to treat it as the enemy. To kill it at all costs. Mother Nature has provided us with a free inexhaustible super healthy food and how do we repay her generosity? By pouring harmful chemicals on them.

I’m not an eco-warrior or a forager so I’ll admit I was nervous the first time I ate it, but it was only my prejudice that made me feel that way. So next time you’re in the garden and you see Dandelion leaves – don’t pour chemicals on them, cut them and eat them; your body will thank you for it.

And so will future generations.

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About Nick

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Nick Turrell is an accomplished gardening journalist and designer. His articles have been featured in publications such as The Sunday Times, The Guardian, The RHS Magazine, and the Daily Telegraph.

 

He has also designed gardens all over the UK, including the Bowden Park Estate in Wiltshire. With a keen eye for design and a passion for plants, Nick brings his expertise to the world of gardening.

Nick has also appeared on both television and radio as a gardening expert. He co-presented a gardening program on BBC 1 with Jane Asher, and has shared his knowledge on BBC Radio 2's Steve Wright in the Afternoon and BBC Radio Leicester which is actually where Nick and Andy met.

 

His enthusiasm for gardening is infectious, and he strives to inspire others to get outside and enjoy the natural world.

#thepierceperspective

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