I wasn’t able to volunteer today at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens (RTBG) but you may be interested in a couple of my casual experiments.
Firstly, I decided to pick the leaf tips from a couple of my camellia trees and then prepare them to make a brew of green tea; in order to determine the flavour and see if there were any negative side effects. The large camellia bushes lived here when I bought the house and I have no idea of their specific identity. They were well established and I found it was impossible to get tiny tips like those on the tea plants in the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens in the Food Garden. Therefore, when it came to smushing these tips after the microwave process, the leaf veins were thick and comparatively tough and didn’t mush down. After a while I gave up and then I let them dry.
Since then I have made a pot of tea and found the flavour stronger than that with the RTBG green tea which we had tried. The tannin was stronger or so it seemed.
The second experiment started out when I was given three fruits from a medlar tree. After eating each delicious fruit I added a seed into each of three pots and, without any idea of how they germinate or the conditions they need to grow, I kept them moist and warm during winter. Over time cotyledons turned to real leaves and plants have grown. I think, with the exception of one plant which may be an Echium, they are all weeds. I never intended to grow weeds, but with all the learning that I am having through my university course and at the RTBG, watching their growth is fascinating. The dimensions of Weed Girl’s interests are vast!
Some plants are on their way to flowering. Of course, there is no sign of a medlar.