|Young Celtuce or Wo Sun Plant|
Last year we discovered a pack of interesting seeds for a Chinese vegetable in a small Asian grocery store. Of course the seeds left the store with us... No regrets. The first crop of this splendid Asian green was a delight and lasted but a short time in our garden.
This season represents our second season of growing celtuce. Sadly, our packet seeds were no longer viable but we were saved by the emergence of two plants, which self-seeded in our gravel pathway (of all places!) in the autumn. These plants are now ready for picking.
|Notice the emerging stem|
In their first incarnation we harvested the plants while still young in a similar way to Yau Mak or Choy Sum. However, we have learned from a recent culinary experience in China that celtuce plants can provide two vegetables. Rather than pulling the young plants, the leaves can be harvested as required and, as the stems lengthen, the mature vegetables can be trimmed, sliced and then cooked similarly to celery.
The plant grows relatively easily but it appears that the seed needs to be relatively fresh to germinate effectively, sprouting best in the autumn months. Celtuce is known as Wo Sun in Chinese.
Needless to say we will be returning to that Asian grocery store to buy a new seed packet of this tasty vegetable.