SEEDS FOR CONTEMPORARY GARDENS
Italian brand Piccolo offers select seeds for urban gardens, designed for pot growing: compact, dwarf varieties, suitable for terrace garden spaces, all lovingly packaged in sustainable and completely recyclable materials. Choose from our selection of edible flowers and herbs.
Nasturtium Blue Pepe is a unique European variety bred specifically for culinary use. The name is derived from its wonderful steel-blue leaves with purplish undersides. The flowers themselves are also edible and their bright-red hue makes an attractive addition to salads, as well as being perfect for garnishing stir fries. The leaves have a slightly peppery taste, reminiscent of watercress. The flavour becomes spicier when the flowers are grown in sunnier, hotter weather. The flowers are less intensely flavoured than the leaves but they add a dramatic, colourful zing to any recipe. Nasturtiums were first cultivated in Perù and were introduced to Europe by the Spanish conquistadores in the 16th century.
LATIN NAME: Tropaeolum majus
VARIETY: Blue Pepe
QUANTITY: 10 seeds
PLANT SIZE: Height 20 cm Width 20 cm
CONTAINER SIZE: Height 20 cm Width 20 cm
COMPANION PLANT: Tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, radishes, cucumbers, salads.
HOW TO GROW:
SOWING: Indoor Feb-Apr Outdoor Apr-June
TIMING: Germination 7-15 days Harvesting 50-70 days
SPACING: When sowing 3-5 cm; Depth 2 cm When thinning 5-10 cm
GROWING: Sunlight Full sun to partial shade. Soil Well-drained, light and moist soil.
Watering Regular, allow to dry out. Feeding Addition of fertilizer is not necessary.
CARING: Expert tip Do not fertilise because this will promote leaf growth and suppress flowering. Dead-heading or picking the flowers will prolong blooming.
SUPPORTING: Pollinators. Attracts bees, butterflies and birds.
PESTS: Repels aphids, bugs and rabbits.
HOW TO EAT
Pick nasturtium buds, petals and leaves in the cool morning air when the flowers have just opened. Interestingly, the more stressed the plant is, the more pungent its flavour will be. Stressed plants will lead to a more pungent flavour.
Medicinal properties Ancient South Americans used nasturtiums as a hair-growth supplement – perhaps it’s worth a try?!
How to eat:
The edible flower trend has been around for a long time but has had a resurgence in recent years. These blooms are great for adding colour and a peppery flavour to salads and cold dishes. Not everybody knows, however, that nasturtium seeds are nutty and peppery, too, and can be pickled to produce what are known as ‘poor man’s capers’.