Wednesday, March 10, 2010

the comfrey patch

There's been a lot of comfrey talk recently on a gardening forum I frequent. I understand it has a number of uses from liquid fertiliser (aka comfrey tea), to compost activator, from potato fertiliser to mulch, so I decided to grow some in the suburban veg plot. Here comes the science bit, so listen carefully. If you're going to get comfrey, you need the 'Bocking 14' variety. This can be obtained only as root cuttings as its seeds are sterile. If anyone offers you comfrey seeds back away very slowly and carefully - if sown in your garden, this stuff will self seed all over the place for the next few centuries and you'll never be rid of it (nor be able to find any of your lovely vegetables among its copious leaves). Bocking 14 is all you need to remember. So anyway, I ordered some root cuttings via eBay, which arrived well packaged, healthy looking and moist. I decided to clear a space behind the compost heap to grow the comfrey - a currently unused area but one that I can access easily to harvest the leaves come 2011. I just have to resist until then as it needs a growing season to establish itself.
I'll have to venture out on a nettle harvesting walk in the meantime for an alternative 'tea' base.

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