I'm drawing a blank on what I planted in the one bed next to the kale. Can any of you help?
About 10 or 12 inches tall.
Has a taste almost like an edible chrysanthemum, but the only one of those I might have planted has a growth habit that looks like an ornamental (more frilly leaves), not these broad leaves.
No hair, but when I bit it there were a few strings in the stalk. Tasted good, it was juicy and kind of piney like a chrysanthemum.
The options for what I could have planted, from looking at my seed collection:
prize choy (but doesnt have the white stems like the images of prize choy i'm seeing- I've never tasted prize choy, so not sure.)
tatsoi (no, I've grown that, it is round and darker and close to the ground)
mizuna (no, that is frilly)
calendula (? doubtful but have never actually had any come up so can't tell what the foliage looks like)
I really don't know what else it could be! There is a small row full of it, so I definitely planted it on purpose. Aside from the calendula, zinnias, and the occasional marigold, I don't plant flowers, so it has to be some kind of food plant.
I WISH!!! I have been looking for culantro for years, actually found one one year, we are too cool for it here and it dies pretty quickly. This definitely doesn`t have the culantro taste, oh man I wish it did.
I'm sorry, I can't help you out, but there are two other places you can check. One being your extension. A lot of times they have a department that you can send photos to for plant identification. The other is, if you have a cell phone, there's an app for that!
Thanks TJ, I`m outside the US... but I used to work for Cornell Coop Extension when I was in college, so maybe I need to see if there is some angle I can work there!!
Rebecca, thanks about the calendula. It is another one of these "holy grail" plants I always hope to have (and never have).
My seeds are usually pretty easy to keep tabs on because I bring them all in from abroad when I travel (you may know how that goes) and may have.... a spreadsheet to keep track of them? (ah, the shame of the seed hoarder). I used to keep a journal but that has fallen by the wayside, now I think I shall have to take that up again....
I will probably just let it grow and see what it does, and eventually cook it up as if it were chrysanthemum greens if it doesn`t change drastically. I ate a leaf yesterday and didn`t die, lol. I will definitely let at least one bolt.
Mizuna that has come back from seed in my garden has come back with varying leaf shape. Some have been more rounded like in your picture. By about the third or fourth season coming back on it's own, the only mizuna left had a vaguely frilled more rounded leaf and lots of spines and the flavor was pretty strong and spicy.
I think mizuna is heavily selected for its frilly leaf shape. After a couple generations in the garden, it could be easily lost.
I'm guessing it's a round leaf garland chrysanthemum that somehow came out of your frilly leaf variety??? Not sure if that occurs commonly or not, but it was just the first thing that sprung to mind when I looked at your picture.
That or broad leaf definitely looks like a candidate.
And.......Last night I discovered a few seed packets that were in Vietnamese. I don't read Vietnamese, unfortunately, and went by the picture (I buy seeds wherever I find them, this was a few years ago at a Chinese market in urban NJ across the road from my US bank. You never know where you're going to find good things.) Yard long beans and chrysanthemum. Pic did not look like round or broad leaf varieties, but like Rebecca mentioned, things sometimes don't match their packaging!
I keep looking at your plant and it says lettuce. I looked around for one i planted one year but couldn't find it. I think the name was "mustard lettuce" seems like I remember it tasting kind of peppery. From the site Steve posted:
Plants grow about 36 " tall in good soil. Stems for pickling should be harvested before the plant sets flowers. Plant 15 inches apart for best shaped plants.