The Potager

Plant Information

The Potager is a formal and geometric vegetable and pot herb garden. In late Medieval times the three main staples of their diet were bread, potage and ale. Potage included oatmeal, pot herbs and flowers.

Marigold – (Calendula officinalis)
Heartsease – (Viola tricolor)

The cereals were ground at home with a hand quern or in a mortar, which resulted in a bran-like stew thickener into which eggs were sometimes mixed, or saffron to render the colour more appetising. Any vegetables that were available were cooked into the porray until a puree resulted which was then diluted with beef fat. It was then seasoned with various herbs and seeds, and for the well off, meat would be added. The most commonly grown vegetables for pottage were beans, peas, garlic, leeks and onions.

Welsh onion (Allium fistulosum)
Botanical nameCommon name
Allium sativumGarlic
Allium fistulosumWelsh onion
Apium graveolensWild celery, smallage
Atriplex hortensisRed Orach
Beta vulgarisBulls blood beet
Beta vulgarisRed chard/seakale beet
Brassica oleracea longataTall collard,Tree collard, walking stick cabbage,
Giant Jersey kale
Brassica oleracea var. capitataCouve Tronchuda
Chenopodiom bonus-henricusGood King Henry, Mercury, allgood,
Roman plant, Smiddy leaves
Daucus carotaWild carrot
Eryngium campestreEryngo, Field/sea holly
Foeniculum dulce var. dulceSweet/Florence fennel
Lathyrus sylvestrisNarrow leaved pea
Nigella sativaBlack cumin/fennel flower
Pastinaca sativa ssp. sativaWild parsnip
Petroselinum crispumCurled parsley/plain leaved
Portulacea oleracea sativaPurslane
Ribes ava-crispaGooseberry
Sium sisarumSkirret
Taraxacum officinaleDandelion
Viola tricolorHeartsease

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