Wednesday, 9 May 2012

wisteria

Wisteria is possibly my favourite plant of all time. I love its hanging blossoms and its gnarled vines with murky green leaves; it looks picturesque no matter the season and its flowering sprays are one of the few things (along with the glut of plums and peaches) that consoles me over the inevitable summer days to come. Did you ever notice that the vines only spiral in one direction (depending on the species)?

There is wisteria where I live, trained over some wooden arches, that have recently come to bloom, seemingly to the displeasure of some odd another who has torn them off their wooden support much to my consternation. It was a sore sight to behold, a wreck of twisted vines and crushed blossoms with little leafy buds only just forming. It seemed an incredible waste to allow these flowers to wither away, so I gathered an ample armful and pottered home. They would be wonderfully ornamental if crystallised and I have a cake idea that it would garnish splendidly. So I washed the flowers and left them to dry (as you see in the photo). I was pretty sure they were edible (wouldn't it be marvelous to flavour chocolate with their sweet bouquet?), as I had heard about people munching and even making a wine out of their blossoms but I thought to check it out in case, and truly it was a good thing too. Some species of wisteria make very good eating (flowers only), while others are severely toxic. What a pity...

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