Ginger Group Session Five

Aframomum melegueta

Our collection of growing material is now complete. The Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh have agreed to give us a rhizome division of Aframomum melegueta or ‘Grains of Paradise’, and West African ginger that produces seeds which are ground and used as a peppery spice. These seeds were once much more economically important than they are today as the availability of cheap Black Pepper from Vietnam has displaced their usage.

A number of the rhizomes we have acquired are already sprouting in a variety of heated situations. The black Cardamom, which I took home after the first frost in November has now begun producing new stems. The Ginger, Galangal and Curcuma comosa rhizomes all have small shoots and the Kaempferia parviflora is still in the green. We intend to start planting out in the bed during our March session.

That means we need to start paving the way and this means lifting all the gingers from the temporary bed and removing the bark compost ready for the bottom layer of fresh manure and this is the major task fro the February session. We’re going to put the exisitng bark compost in front of the LGH where it will stay, wrapped in a tarp, until the manure is in the bed.

We’ll need to remove the gingers to the west side staging and recover them with fleece as the cold weather is going to continue. Some of the smaller pots will be transferred to the cuttings room in the UGH where we will attempt to start them in the coming month.

We will also start the session with a short seed sowing workshop where we’ll be sowing the melons we will be growing along the west side of the greenhouse as well as some Cannas which will mature in the LGH whilst the Melons are growing and will eventually be sales stock.

Finally, it’s time for you to decide what specimens you want to grow for yourselves so that I can acquire the seeds before the March session. So it’s going to be a busy session this month.

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