Tuesday, January 24, 2012

King of Cabbages

You can't make kimchee or sauerkraut out of it, but the monarch of the cabbage family is the beauteous ornamental kale which, possibly owing to our freakishly warm winter (so far), is brightening up many city streets, vest-pocket parks, and apartment house fa├žades, even in late January. I fell in love with this plant some years back, and once even had one on a coffee table for a while. It resembles irradiated roses or peonies but has no scent. You can buy smaller ones at florists or corner Korean produce markets and add them to mixed bouquets, but the really beautiful large ones need to be planted outdoors. We have had one small snowfall and, regrettably, I didn't have my camera at the ready to snap the sight of these botanical lovelies poking their curly heads out of the snow.