Good King Henry


New Herbs from Herbal Haven

Last week Mark sent me a link to the website of herb growers Herbal Haven. As I’m a bit of a herb lover (okay, I admit it: I’m herb-obsessed and tend to compulsively buy interesting varieties) it wasn’t too long before I’d placed an order for a dozen new plants: Winter Savory, St John’s Wort, Alecost, Bergamot, Good King Henry, Musk Mallow, Chocolate Mint, Grapefruit Mint, Lime Mint, Blackcurrant Sage, Skullcap and Valerian.

They weren’t dispatched last week – Herbal Haven wanted to minimise the risk of the package being stuck in a warehouse over the Bank Hol weekend – and instead were sent out yesterday, arriving this morning.

They were very well-packaged, with four plastic containers in a box:

Each container holding three potted plants, the pots individually wrapped in cellophane to keep the moisture in:

All twelve plants were in tip-top condition and none the worse for wear for their overnight courier trip:

I’ll be planting those out this evening, either into the hexagonal herb tubs or individual pots as available space seems to warrant. And then I’ll look forward to experimenting with a few new herbal tea flavour combinations, once they’ve put on a bit of growth.


Good King Henry

Also known as Poor-man’s Asparagus, Perennial Goosefoot, Lincolnshire Spinach or, to botanists, as Chenopodium bonus-henricus. It is a spinach substitute, essentially, something that hasn’t been in vogue since medieval times. I heard about this on the radio (I think it was the Food Programme), and apparently it’s a great plant to grow – doesn’t require much looking after, doesn’t get destroyed that much by pests or diseases. You just leave it in and let it do its thing (that being growing up to 60cm high). What’s more, it’s perennial.

I’m not that clued-up on the recipes, but I think you need to boil it for ten minutes, to get rid of the bitterness. Hopefully we can have some feedback later in the year.

Darren Turpin

Gardener at Backyard Kitchen Garden
A passionate gardener with a speciality in growing fruit and vegetables on a budget!

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