Swede 'Laurentian'

Brassica napus

Full-flavoured and earthy with a savoury yet sweet aftertaste, this highly underrated vegetable is a wonderful addition to the winter garden. This outstanding heirloom variety has a smooth and creamy texture that is a welcome surprise in our Diggers restaurants. A variety of Brassica rapa, the purplish tops can also be steamed and eaten.

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Swede 'Laurentian'

This improved variety of Turnip 'Purple Top 'was bred in Quebec, Canada and introduced to the US in 1920. The fine grained, slightly sweet, flesh is ideal for mashing and serving as a substitute to traditional mashed spud. Like parsnip, a light frost helps to sweeten the root before harvest.

How to grow

Both swedes and turnips need to be grown quickly to ensure mild, sweet roots, so give them full sun, plenty of water and blood and bone mixed with a little bit of lime. Thin seedlings to 10cm spacings.

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