Day 9 – UH foraging challenge

My latest find is a succulent crop of  English Chamomile leaves and parsley.

Parsley, Chamomile and mystery speckled plant.
Parsley and mystery speckled plant.

Growing amongst it is a speckled plant which I don’t know. Any idea what it is? The leaves are rubbery and almost orchid like.  A few of these have popped up in my rooftop planters amongst the perennial herbs. I am looking forward to seeing the flowers and identifying the plant.

Here is a very familiar plant – Holly (Ilex aquifolium) currently in flower.  The whole plant is well known for being poisonous,  especially to children and yet in small quantities it has been long used as a tea and effervescent a coffee substitute. I’ve found several recipes over the years for tea and infused wine from Holly leaves but always wonder if the plant has been muddled with Barberis aquifolium for those recipes.

Photo credit - Peter Warnock.
Photo credit – Peter Warnock.

This is certainly not a plant to be considered for regular consumption but those flowers are stunning and I’m more tempted to add one or two of those to a recipe,  than the leaves. If you have experience of using Holly, I’d love to hear about it. In the meantime,  let’s leave it for the bees.



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