Ornamental Kale in Focus

Why stop at flowers? Winter’s bounty offers many unique textures and wonderful possibilities including vegetables! And with blooms as showy as the ornamental kale, how could you resist?

As the original Victorian language of flowers was inspired by the Turkish Selam, a coded language of plants and objects, many fruits and vegetables found their way into the flower dictionaries of yesteryear. Some other vegetables to be assigned meanings were lettuce (cold hearted) turnip (charity) and potato (beneficence) among others. If some of their definitions seem unrelated, this is because they were merely selected as rhyming words, nothing more.

Five Facts

  • In the ancient language of flowers, the cabbage represents profit. Might be time to plant some profit in the veggie garden!
  • Part of the brassica family, kale is related to broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower.
  • These quirky blooms come in tight round rosettes and their petals may either be solid or beautifully lacey, with heads as small as a tea cup or as big as a dessert plate. Long, lanky stems are also available. Their colours range from shades of white and cream, through to green, soft pink and vivid purple.
  • BEWARE – as the flower ages you may begin to notice a slight ‘cabbagy’ smell, but don’t let this discourage you from enjoying them this winter!
  • Locally grown (mostly in colder climates of Victoria and Tasmania) from March to July.