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Post by Sparhawk on 14th March 2010, 12:47 am

Lady S anounced tonight when we were out that she would like 'us' to have a go at growing water cress, I'm sure I've seen an easyish way somewhere, any ideas please...

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Post by Compostwoman on 14th March 2010, 9:50 am

Buy packet of water cress.

Eat cress.

Put root bit in water.

Change water frequently ( it likes flowing water in the wild...)

Cut and eat.

repeat as needed. Water Cress... Icon_biggrin
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Post by polgara on 14th March 2010, 10:07 am

American Land Cress is similar & grows in a pot. I was going to suggest the other option CW but you beat me to it.

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Post by Guest on 14th March 2010, 1:54 pm

If you are interested in really growing it...
You sow the seed in an area of damp ground, like next to a ditch (can be man made in a vat 30cm deep with 15cm mixture of soil and compost). When the plants are at 3 - 4 leaves you transplant them to 10cm spacing in the ditch with a cover to 5cm of water. Slowly increase to 10 - 15cm of water and keep adding water to maintain the level. Eat 1 month after seeding. Once it flowers it is too bitter. You can also grow it in perminantly damp soil.

This is assuming you do not have a stream!

If you are interested I have a packet of seeds for water cress going spare as I bought it thinking I most grow some to only find I actually have a huge area in the stream where it is already flourishing. If you would like the seeds PM me with your address and I will send them over they are still well in date.
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Post by Luath on 14th March 2010, 8:36 pm

Easily growable from seed in a pot if you keep it nice and damp; or start from bought pieces - leave in a jar of water for a week or so,w hen roots will grow, and you can plant them up.
I find the land cress too harshkly hot/bitter for my taste, but funnily enough the variegated one I grew ahd virtually no taste at all.

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Post by Sparhawk on 15th March 2010, 12:41 am

Thanks, will consider next move...

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"the luxuries of civilisation satisfy only those wants which they themselves create..."
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                "Fleeing from the Cylon tyranny, the last Battlestar, Galactica,
    leads a ragtag, fugitive fleet, on a lonely quest—for a shining planet known as Earth."
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Post by Worzel on 22nd April 2011, 4:01 pm

I know its not Watercress but virtually the same a simple way to grow Land CressTake A 2 Litre Plastic Milk Container lay it on its side , with the Handle up the top cut the whole side off down to just below the handle ,paint the outside with a suitable paint ,neednt be that elaborate unless your into it , this is to keep the roots from the Sun. Put in Compost or filling from grow bag etc.a couple of small holes in the bottom for drainage ,a nail will do ,plant your LandCress seed and away you go a nice little size just right for a few meals at a time and Make some more of these and Plant for Succession
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Post by Dandelion on 22nd April 2011, 4:07 pm

great

I've tried growing watercress for the first time this year - it's in a bucket of compost (a bucket without a handle, with holes in the bottom.) The bucket is standing in an old washing up bowl which is kept half full of water. I empty the water once or twice a week and refill. The cress is just large enough for me to nibble to check that it's watercress -a week or so and I can pick some for a sandwich. The seeds are 'Aqua' from Marshalls.

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Post by Hairyloon on 23rd April 2011, 12:21 am

I wondered about an old bath and a pump.
Connect the drain of the bath to pump: perhaps a little fountain or other water feature, and voilà you have flowing water for the cress... how fast a flow do they like?

I presume you all saw that poly-culture set-up on the HFW fish series last year?
Combining watercress and trout farming.
The water flows through the roots of the cress and washes lots of little critters that live there out into the trout tanks where the fish eat the critters and piss in the water. The water is then pumped back up to the cress where the trout piss makes good fertiliser.

A stroke of genius, but I've not worked out how to downscale it.
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Post by Compostwoman on 23rd April 2011, 12:23 am

Water butt, has fish in to stop mossies breeding...trickle outlet into water cress bed container...water has fish poo in so good fertiliser
?
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Post by Hairyloon on 23rd April 2011, 12:26 am

Compostwoman wrote:Water butt, has fish in to stop mossies breeding...trickle outlet into water cress bed container...water has fish poo in so good fertiliser
?
Don't reckon the fish would get big enough to be worth eating. :?
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Post by Compostwoman on 23rd April 2011, 12:26 am

Maybe not, but they would still fertilise the greens AND still keep the mossie lavae down?

To quote Meatloaf " two out of three ain't bad..."
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Post by Sparhawk on 23rd April 2011, 12:40 am

Compostwoman wrote:Water butt, has fish in to stop mossies breeding...trickle outlet into water cress bed container...water has fish poo in so good fertiliser
?

I have "winebottle cork" fish in mine to stop the mossies, but they don't produce fertilizer...

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"the luxuries of civilisation satisfy only those wants which they themselves create..."
                 The Worst Journey In The World - Apsley Cherry-Garrard (1922)

                "Fleeing from the Cylon tyranny, the last Battlestar, Galactica,
    leads a ragtag, fugitive fleet, on a lonely quest—for a shining planet known as Earth."
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Post by Compostwoman on 23rd April 2011, 12:45 am

How do mossies get into water butts with lids? Mine have lids on but still get lavae? Shocked Shocked
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Post by Lottie on 23rd April 2011, 5:31 am

But then aren't the fish in darkness?

I grew watercress in my pond... Embarassed Laughing worked a treat, spread well too... Rolling Eyes but then I was too scared to eat it cos someone said that I could ingest some parasite or something or other that lurked in the pond that could end up on the watercress, I wish I could find where I saw that... Neutral then again, I am a gullible pillock Cool

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Post by Hairyloon on 23rd April 2011, 7:53 am

Lottie wrote:but then I was too scared to eat it cos someone said that I could ingest some parasite...
I believe they can harbour liver flukes, and I understand they are proper nasty.
Not sure if that is a realistic concern or if it is lottery odds of picking one up, but it weren't you being gullible this time.

Thinking about it, the life cycle of the liver fluke is pretty bizarre: it is a real puzzle how such a thing could possibly evolve.
Yet I have never once heard the god-squad types tout it as evidence of God's creation. :?
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Post by Hairyloon on 23rd April 2011, 9:06 am

This has set me thinking though... A water butt, I think is not a happy fish pond: small, dark, low oxygen.
But what about an IBC? Reasonable size and translucent... and a quick google suggests it is fairly common practice... though not, I suspect combined with watercress.
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Post by Sparhawk on 23rd April 2011, 9:27 am

Liver fluke shouldn't be a problem in a your own pond, the eggs is passed through animal poo getting into into streams, not just from sheeps, but from cows, humans, & other animals too, it then gets eaten by water snails & when in larva stage attaches its self to plants ie: watercress waiting to be eaten & infect the next host.

If your pond isn't fed by flowing water, & presumably if you don't spread animal manure too close, it shouldn't be a problem. Personally I would probably think if there were too many ducks visiting too...

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"the luxuries of civilisation satisfy only those wants which they themselves create..."
                 The Worst Journey In The World - Apsley Cherry-Garrard (1922)

                "Fleeing from the Cylon tyranny, the last Battlestar, Galactica,
    leads a ragtag, fugitive fleet, on a lonely quest—for a shining planet known as Earth."
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Post by GB on 10th May 2011, 3:25 am

Dig large fish pond, take excavated soil and turn into gurgling stream/waterfall/cascade. Plant said cascade with water cress adn stock said pond with fish. Eat fish when grown large enough and cress in the mean time.

I actually did the above (pond was 12ft by 10ft by 4ft deep) but put buterfly koi in instead of trout or tilapia or catfish but it will work with most any fish really.

Just remember, what ever pump you choose to run the water, it will look better with the next size times three Rolling Eyes Laughing

You could downscale it to a bath tub and only have two or three fishes in it if you liked, put a pot of gravel on the side, run your pumped water into it and plant your cress there. Let it drain into the tub and there you go, aqua culture one dinner at a time Wink

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