A Salad Lover’s Flower

nasturtium watercolor by Leora Wenger
Do like salads? Do you like elegant salads? Do you like the idea of being able to go to your backyard (or a container for plants, if you don’t have a backyard) and pick a pretty flower and round, green, tangy leaves to put in your salad?

In order to present to you nasturtium, the flower pictured in this watercolor, I wanted to show you a picture of this edible plant. Instead of showing a photograph, I decided to do a watercolor. When you paint, unlike in a photograph, you can choose what you want to present. So I decided to emphasize the flowers (which will become pretty petals of orange, yellow or red in your salad) and the round-shaped leaves.

The nasturtium seed looks like a shriveled chickpea. It grows easily: all you need to do is poke it with your finger into the ground. Don’t plant nasturtium where you have precious grass; the nasturtium plant will take over, and come frost time you’ll have a bare spot where you used to have grass. But I find it fairly easy to grow. The first summer I tried there was a drought in New Jersey, and these plants did not do well. But recently we’ve had a lot of rain, and my little germinated nasturtium plants are already sticking two round little leaves out of the ground.

More about nasturtium here.

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