August 24, 2018

Garden Mystery

It's a jungle in there. A sweet smelling, edible jungle.

Our garden has grown well this year, due to a Spring application of a couple tractor loads of manure. I imagine the heat this summer didn't hurt, either. 

This is our third season since we started our new raised bed from scratch, and the soil is building up nicely. I take the loads of worms as a good sign that things are happening, and this space is being transformed into an organic food factory.

So what is the mystery?

One of our neighbours brought over a potted vegetable they didn't want any more. Fortunately, we are plant rescuers, and no plant is turned away. We welcomed the new addition to our garden. 

Thing is, we have no idea what it is. The neighbour called it "lettuce", but we have never seen lettuce like it.

Are there any gardeners out there that can help us identify our new mystery vegetable?

Here it is. 

Do you know what this plant is?

Whoever identifies this veggie successfully, will be invited over to our house to share a salad with us, as part of a harvest feast.

I went for a bike ride in the forest this evening. I felt a change in the air. We have also been noticing that the hummingbirds are thinning out, and the fierce competitions at the feeder have faded.

Fall is approaching. 

Happy harvest.


  1. Anonymous8/24/2018

    I do not know the name in english but I think it is the lactuca sativa var.longifolia , so indeed a variation of lettuce ... greetings Agnes.

    1. Anonymous8/25/2018

      Yep romaine lettuce was also my guess

  2. Looks a bit like artic lettuce or even a butternut lettuce that has grown out lol. Not entirely sure as there's so many varieties however looks like the lettuce your can grow here :)
    I'd love to share a lunch with you and Linda, might need to be a virtual one though. We're coming into spring here so I've chitted my early potatoes and today will plant some celery, beans and as silverbeet. :)

  3. Well living in the south (USA) for a long time, these look like collard greens to me. That's my first guess. Not sure about eating them raw like a salad. We cook them here. You either love 'em or hate 'em. They have a distict and very strong taste. I love them. Best ones I've had were cooked with red seedless grapes. The sweet grapes are a contracting taste to the more bitter greens. I love collard greens! But not all the time. They are said to be very good for you, I think they are loaded with iron. Cut the leaf away from the stem. Stems are tough when cooked. I'm very anxious to hear what others say these are!!!! Love these photos!

  4. They look very much like cos lettuce that is beginning to shoot up prior to going to seed. They may be a bit bitter already by the looks. Have you been eating the leaves? NB Just discovered that in the US cos is known as romaine. That style of upright green lettuce is very common in salad mixes here in Oz..

  5. That's looks like romaine lettuce that is bolting. It will be more bitter, but still very good.

    We eat a lot of collards and those look more like romaine leaves than the thick, darker collard greens I am used to. Whatever they are, enjoy!!

  6. Thank you, everyone, for sharing your plant identification skills with us. We did the all-important taste test, and decided that the mystery plant is indeed a type of romaine lettuce. Previously I thought there was only one type of romaine lettuce - the kind that we buy in the grocery store.

    But no! I learned there are many varieties of Roman type lettuce, and this is one of them. It is quite delicious. We are going to see if we can get seeds from it, so thanks for the link, Erin.

    Salad and a harvest feast for everyone.

  7. Ah, you figured it out! A variety of romaine! I was hoping you would announce the correct identification!

  8. That's exactly the sort of Romaine we have in markets here in California, and which I have grown. I did grow a speckled variety once, too -- they are all my favorite lettuces.


Comments will be printed after moderation to eliminate spam. We are proudly a no buying, no selling website.

We enjoy reading all comments, and respond when time permits.

If you put a name to your comment we can all recognize you for your contribution.

Thank you for visiting and commenting.