Brummie gardeners take on Shark Fin Melons

Gardeners are being invited to grow something new this year, at a special Seed Event taking place at Martineau Gardens, Edgbaston.

Organised by Garden Organic, the free event on Sat 3 March, (1pm until 4pm) will put non-traditional crops like shark fin melon and chickpeas in the spot-light.

The event will include a growing workshop, a seed saving talk plus seeds and information to take home.  This will be a chance to find out more about growing non-traditional crops such as shark fin melon, chickpeas, haloon, mustard and many more.

The shark fin melon gets its name because the strands are scraped out and made into a broth resembling the texture of shark fin soup.  Many of these plants originate in  Asia, Southern and Central America and the Caribbean.

In the West Midlands, older gardeners of ethnic communities have been saving their seeds for years, and through selection, they have stocks of seeds that are adapted to UK growing conditions.

Anton Rosenfeld, of Garden Organic’s Sowing New Seeds Project explains the importance of getting to grips with these lesser-known crops: “Many of these stocks of seeds sit in jars in sheds and the people that grow them are reaching an age where there is a danger of losing both the seeds and the knowledge, if nothing is done to preserve it.”

Caroline Hutton, Director of Martineau Gardens, explains why the charity is hosting the event: “We want to inspire people to make a move towards a more sustainable lifestyle. Growing your own food organically is a step in the right direction. It’s great fun, low cost and you get to eat delicious food.”

This event is part of the Sowing New Seeds project, funded by the Big Lottery Fund Local Food Scheme.

The Seed Event takes place on Sat 3 March at Martineau Gardens, 27 Priory Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham B5 7UG.
Organised by Garden Organic. Free Entry.
Tea and cake available.
Further information on 0121 440 7430 or
The Community Garden is located five minutes from the MAC and opposite the Priory Hospital.
There are parking spaces available on site or the Gardens are served by buses 1, 45, 47, 61, 63, X62 or X64.