Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Japanese Seeds

As part of my birthday present my daughter in law Haruko, sent me these seeds.

Two different varieties of Dianthus and Physalis in the middle. I just love Chinese Lanterns as we call them, and do not have any plants at the moment, so I am really looking forward to getting a propagator to grow them. Father Christmas can buy me a windowsill electric one which I have seen.

Although I have no knowledge of Japanese, the instructions are easy to follow. On the front of the packet the Dianthus are shown in a flower vase which means they are good cut flowers, and the Physalis is growing in a pot, which means it is a pot plant in Japan but over here we grow them in the garden usually. Around the cover picture is a scale which shows you how tall they grow.

When I got the 'seed packet' out of the sealed bag, I had the most wonderful surprise. It opened like a card with the packet of seeds on the right. Step by step growing instructions on the left, and picture at the top showing where they should be situated in a garden. There is other wording on the right which I will get Haruko to translate when I next see her. (Not really, the next time as she will have just given birth so might be some what pre-occupied don't you think?)

The sheet then opens up into A4 size with more writing on the top (which can't still be instructions or maybe so. More to be translated). At the bottom there is a place to write a message. There were little plant labels too inside and on the reverse the latin names in English in this case:

Physalis alkekengi L.val. francheti Makino then more details in Japanese, and temperature and growing charts which you see on a lot of seed packets these days.

I was thrilled to bits - they are all like little greetings cards and so well presented.

Haruko often buys me Japanese vegetable seeds too, to experiment with, and they like our climate so grow well up the allotment. Some I have to ask their culinary use - whether I can eat them raw etc. Most I just take a bite out of when I am up the allotment so I soon find out!

Although I fed the chickens at 7am it was still rather dark here and the dawn chorus had not started. Too dark to take photos - except for one of the sunrise a bit later, but that was a bit dark too. Even the chickens were a bit reluctant to get out of bed when I opened their door - but did of course, a tempting warm breakfast with warm water was gently steaming in their run, but they didn't charge out into the pen to try and find me!

I am off up the lottie once the frost has cleared to pick some fresh greens for the girls. So will catch up with you all later.


  1. I think that they are brilliant too, and I just adore anything Japanese - so unusual and the packaging is superb.

    I look at KT's blog (as well as yours of course) every day to see if it has changed and it is lovely that there are passages in English too.

    Very much appreciated.

    You can't leave comments in English sadly otherwise I would


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