Have you ever tried canola flowers as a salad garnish?

canola_field-300x168It’s a vibrant yellow, has an aroma as sweet as honey and a fresh delicate taste. That’s canola, according to Mark Modra, who produces 1,000 tonnes of it each year on the outskirts of Port Lincoln as well as east of Edillilie on South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula.

Mark was one of the first farmers to grow canola in the early 1990s, seeing it as an agronomic tool to manage disease and weeds. ‘Canola has allelopathic properties, meaning it naturally benefits the following wheat or barley crop without having to use fungicides and helps with overall disease control,’ he says. ‘Canola is also a competitive crop. When it’s managed properly, it can outgrow weeds because it can grow up to six-feet tall.’

In the last month, we have been fortunate enough to capture breath-taking views of endless seas of yellow with the canola crops in full bloom in grain regions across Australia.

The canola crop is windrowed, a process whereby it is cut down and put into rows to fully ripen. It’s then harvested in November. Mark says the lower Eyre Peninsula is the ideal environment for growing canola. ‘We grow non-genetically modified canola in fresh clean air directly off the Southern Ocean,’ he says. ‘Good and very reliable rainfall and seasonal conditions are conducive to growing canola. Because we have sea on three sides of us we have very mild growing conditions, meaning that the canola plants rarely get stressed.’ 

Mark says flowers (as a product) are available now in September and October. He says the real potential and untapped market for canola is its flowers as a salad or garnish option. ‘It’s light, refreshing taste combined with its vivid colour give many options for any creative chef.’

Read more of my Love My Salad blogs.

Enjoy your salads!



TIS THE SEASON FOR CHERRIES —————————————————————— Did you know From Paddock to Plates National Schools Program showcases an entire module on the Cherry Industry? Thanks to WA’s Newton Orchards of Manjimup and Valleyview Organics, your classroom can gain wonderful insight into how our Cherry’s end up on our plates. The delicious fruit is now in peak season, so remember to CHERRY-ISH your local producers or fruit stalls on the side of the road, and pick up a box! What tasty cherry recipes will you be whipping up? 🥣 —————————————————————— http://www.frompaddocktoplate.com.au #frompaddocktoplate #feedyourmind #supportlocal

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