Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Who knew?

Last year, a neighbour gave me a couple of baby leek plants she had left over.  They grew into healthy leeks, which I happily cut down and used in homemade soup.

I left the base of the plants in the soil over the winter, simply because I didn't get around to digging over the bed, and this spring a new green shoot appears.

Within a few weeks, that shoot had soared to five feet tall, and instead of a fleshy green and white bulbous end near the soil for soup, it sprouted a round ball, about an inch in diameter, on the top.  The ball wore a paper-thin toque with a long pointed end.   I wish I had photographed it.

I left it alone, knowing nothing about leeks but hoping the plant might still produce some veggies for the pot.

Then, one day, I noticed its toque had split and slipped sideways.

Seed head in toque
(c) Jean Ballard 2013

And over the course of the next few days, the round ball grew, and the toque shrank,

(c) Jean Ballard 2013

And little flowers appeared on the ball,

(c) Jean Ballard 2013

Until it was nearly four inches in diameter,

(c) Jean Ballard 2013

And a garden favourite for the bees.

Bumble bee on leek seed head
(c) Jean Ballard 2013

Who knew that one plain green and white veggie would become the most lovely flower in the garden?

Mother Nature is full of surprises!

1 comment:

Del said...

I recognize that as what I call a multiplier onion. Each and every one of those tiny little bulbs on the end will yield yet another little onion and continue to go to seed and become yet more. The little onions it produces make the most yummy green onions. Or, as you say, when they have grown a little more, yummy little soup onions.
Lucky you to have a friend who shared with you!