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I am enjoying every aspect of learning at the farm. I love going home after a farming day and think of what I’ve learnt that day.

Sometimes, it is just more practice in some aspect of farming, when farming gets more into my body, when integration of knowledge goes beyond the mind.

Sometimes, it’s food for the soul, when I am inspired by the seedlings growing, by the food waste now transformed in forest-smelling compost, or just by remembering how beautiful and courageous it was for Rishi and Manju to create this farm in the city.

And sometimes it’s food for the brain, as when we have our weekly Wednesday lectures and learn about irrigation or soil or compost or…

Based on one of the lecture about the main vegetable families and how to identify them, I am posting here some pictures to help us all – I hope.

Farmly yours,


Brassicaceae family

Includes kale, broccoli, kohlrabi, cauliflower, Asian greens, Brussel sprouts, radishes, collard greens, mustard…

Seed: usually paper-like membrane that separates a two-part capsule

Kale seed pods – Source: https://laurarittenhouse.wordpress.com/2012/10/11/end-of-the-kale/

Broccoli seeds – Source: http://indianapublicmedia.org/eartheats/film-follow-seed-savers-struggle/

Cotyledon (embryonic leaves): typically heart-shaped

Source: http://feedthedatamonster.com/home/2013/10/8/from-brussel-sprouts-to-wasabi-crops-in-the-brassica-family

Cotyledon and one true leaf – Source: Just Back (flickr)

Flower: typically 4 petals arranged in a cross shape.
Remember ‘cruciferae’ the old name of this plant family? Means cross-bearing or crucifix.

Wild radish. Source: http://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/plants/

Birdsrape mustard. Source : http://oregonstate.edu/dept/nursery-weeds/weedspeciespage/wild_mustard/brassica_rapa_vs_kaber.html



Asteraceae family

Includes sunflower, chrysanthemum, feverfew, lettuce, endives, escarole, chicory, artichoke, dandelion, daisy, chamomille…

Seed: elongated, drop-like shape

Globe artichoke seeds – Source: http://bioweb.uwlax.edu/bio203/2011/fenske_rach/

Red Leaf Lettuce Seeds – Source: http://frogstarfarm.com/blog1/tag/seeds/

Cotyledon: 2 leaves, no stem

Cotyledon Sunflower – Source: http://www.flora-west-europa.eu/en/flora/2/helianthus-annuus

Cotyledon and first true leaves of a dandelion – Source: https://plantevaernonline.dlbr.dk/cp/graphics/Name.asp?Language=en&TaskID=1&NameID=30

composite (many small flowers in a flowerhead that has the shape of a disc)

Feverfew – Source: http://www.estrogensource.com/herbal-remedies-for-menopause.html

Chicory flower – Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Chicory_flower_001.jpg


Fabaceae family

Includes peas, all sorts of beans (fava bean, black beans, soy beans, mung beans to name a few), European beans, Asian long beans, chickpeas, lentils, clover, alfalfa, acacia, mesquite…

Seed: bean-like and come in a pod



Cotyledon: 2 leaves, 2 stems

Red Clover – Source: http://sprout.net.au/red-clover-sprouting-seeds.html

Flower: typically 5 petals but of different shapes and sizes

Source: http://botany.csdl.tamu.edu/FLORA/Wilson/tfp/ros/fabpage2.htm

Pea flower – Source : http://www.asergeev.com/pictures/k/Pea_flower.htm

To be continued….
I will post more next week.