Author Topic: Babington's leek study  (Read 17904 times)

goodlife

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Babington's leek study
« on: November 23, 2014, 11:55:33 »
Came across this interesting read...http://orca.cf.ac.uk/56030/1/U584777.pdf

I haven't had chance to go through it yet myself...just skimmed quickly over and decided it is worth of mentioning...

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Babington's leek study
« on: November 23, 2014, 11:55:33 »

Digeroo

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2014, 22:31:06 »
This is proving interesting in parts.  Some is a bit too much for my old brain.

But I have found an interesting bit that bulbils planted in January having been kept in a refridgerator did better than September sown ones.  I thought they needed sowing asap, so had not though of storing in the fridge until the new year.  I will put a reminder in my phone so I do not forget next year.

I have also had a thought that my leeks have grown on from bulbils so are in fact clones which might be the reason that the seeds may not be viable since there are no fathers only mothers.

Robert_Brenchley

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2014, 13:59:18 »
Try getting  bulbils from another source, so hopefully it'll be a different strain with significant genetic differences.

Digeroo

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2014, 02:09:29 »
Having been convinced that the seeds on my leeks were not viable since they seemed very soft and fail a germination test, they are now sprouting quite happily on the seed heads.    :BangHead:

goodlife

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2014, 09:39:02 »
Lol...they are 'variety' that demands specific conditions for germination..they want to be close to 'mum'.. :icon_cheers:

Now you have to take tweezers out and start plugging those seedlings out...one at the time and transplanting them into tray of compost.......have fun... :angel11: :coffee2:

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2014, 11:20:59 »
Goodlife, where do you dig out these interesting papers.  No doubt a lot will be over my head and I have only just started reading, but already very interesting.

Am I remembering this correctly - did we have a discussion years ago about Babington Leek? I described mine, you described yours - and they were different?  There is a nice list of similar species on page 4.  I hope I remember this correctly.  If it was somebody else or perhaps a discussion on another list, my apologies.

I found the Multiplier Onion Minogue (from Heritage Seed Library) on this list, which I have shared with a few people here.  It is A. ampeloprasum var.sectivum.  Always thought this 'pearl onion' looks more like a small leek rather than an onion on account of the flat leaves.

more reading ............... 


galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2014, 11:26:23 »
Page 12 answers another question that I wasn't sure about from a seedsaving point of view.  Babington Leek is both male and female sterile.  This means that is will not cross with Leek and it will not cross with the pearl onion Minogue.  Excellent news  :wave:

Digeroo

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2014, 12:40:26 »
So are we saying that the Babington leek only comes from bulbils, so it must spread very slowly in the wild.   

It may be that they are actually seeds germinating but very small sprouting bulbils,  I am going to shake some over some pots and see what happens.

« Last Edit: November 27, 2014, 12:42:49 by Digeroo »

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2014, 13:10:13 »
So are we saying that the Babington leek only comes from bulbils, so it must spread very slowly in the wild.   

It may be that they are actually seeds germinating but very small sprouting bulbils,  I am going to shake some over some pots and see what happens.

No, Babington Leek has 3 propagation mechanisms.  Bulbils (from the top), Bulblets (the appendages to the bulbs in the ground with the dark yellow sharp pointed hard outer layer) and Bulb splitting.  But according to the thesis, propagation by seed isn't one of them. 

goodlife

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2014, 13:12:50 »
G
Quote
oodlife, where do you dig out these interesting papers.
I'm naturally nosey and when I have to ask 'why'...I just HAVE TO dig answers out....somewhere along I might come across 'stuff' that might not relate to what I've looked for in first place...
basically just by chance.. :drunken_smilie:

Quote
Am I remembering this correctly - did we have a discussion years ago about Babington Leek? I described mine, you described yours - and they were different?  There is a nice list of similar species on page 4.  I hope I remember this correctly.  If it was somebody else or perhaps a discussion on another list, my apologies.

Yes we did have discussion about our leeks.. ..as of plants..not bladder accidents.. :tongue3: :icon_cheers:
I mentioned how yeeeears ago I bought 'Babington's leek from 'Future foods' cataloque (business that haven't existed for looooong time) ..or that what they were supposed to be. But I now believe they are kind of wild leek that does throw flower heads but not seeds or bulbils. .. Instead they make loads of bulblets underground. I'm only going by description so I cannot be 100% sure of the identity. I haven't managed to get any seeds out the flower heads that would germinate...yet. :dontknow:
'ummm...let me see if I can 'dig out' the info again.....I'll be back...' :coffee2:

goodlife

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2014, 13:32:42 »
Right...found it..!

Link=http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Allium+ampeloprasum
At the bottom the page, in cultivation section cultivar called 'Perizweibel'....that is what I was wondering about at the time and still do.
My leek is doesn't have wild leek look about like in photo (quite humble looking head compared 'modern' varieties)...the flower head in mine are big and round, just like any other leek...but it makes good number of bulbils underground...and the 'mother bulb' just keep growing until it is almost 'onion size'..all solid single bulb and no layers like in onion. Babies do grow quite quickly...from little pearls to marble size in a first year and by second year, in autumn,  they are small garlic size single bulbs..it is that size I like to harvest them to be used  as leek flavoured 'onions'.. :icon_cheers: Originally I might have mentioned they grow quicker than that but now that I've paid more attention..I was being too optimistic with my memory :drunken_smilie: Oh, and 'my' leeks are perennial sort..if I don't lift and divide the babies...there is great thicket of the plants in spring amongst the bigger 'adults'...no amount of cold have killed them yet.
'hmm....must scribble the 'Perizweibel' in my notes (read huge pile of bits of paper lying around desk):drunken_smilie:...and remember to look more to it variety...haven't come across it during 'surfing'..(does anybody anymore 'surf' in net these day...?) 

goodlife

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2014, 13:48:00 »
Using Pertzwiebel as search name did yield more info...see here...https://www.southernexposure.com/perennial-leek-oepri-perlzwiebel-2-oz-p-1440.html?zenid=i70j0o16rru76v15grn6ota3i7...although I'm still not any closer to the 'truth'...it does sound very much like 'my leek'  :icon_cheers:
..and here http://heirloomonions.com/?page_id=728
« Last Edit: November 27, 2014, 14:02:58 by goodlife »

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2014, 18:55:39 »
Using Pertzwiebel as search name did yield more info...see here...https://www.southernexposure.com/perennial-leek-oepri-perlzwiebel-2-oz-p-1440.html?zenid=i70j0o16rru76v15grn6ota3i7...although I'm still not any closer to the 'truth'...it does sound very much like 'my leek'  :icon_cheers:
..and here http://heirloomonions.com/?page_id=728

Three morphologically distinct varieties are recognised in Britain; Var. babingtonii
(bulbils 8 - 15mm length); var. ampeloprasum, a seed producing variant considered
to be very rare (Wade et al., 1994) growing on rocky sea cliffs in Wales and
Anglesey (Roberts and Day, 1987) as well as in Cornwall (Mathew, 1996); and var.
bulbiferum (Syme) (syn. var. bulbilliferum Lloyd), a bulbil producing form endemic
in the Channel Islands and lie d'Yeu, N. France (Mathew, 1996), and also found in
W. France (Heukels, 2000; Wiggington, 1999), producing bulbils that are noticeably
smaller than those of var. babingtonii (6 - 8mm) (Heukels, 2000) (Table 1).
Cultivated varieties include the leek (A. ampeloprasum var. porrum L. Gay), widely
grown as a crop throughout Europe, the kurrat, great-headed garlic and the pearl onion (Brewster, 1994) (Table 1).
I wonder whether you have got this one?:  A. ampeloprasum var. ampeloprasum and not var babingtonii
it is very rare and somewhat endangered.

Perlzwiebel is something different according to the description in the thesis (let's assume that is the correct classification).  There is such a great amount of confusion with the term Perlzwiebel being used for all sorts, especially in the States. This would make yours the true wild leek, now rare, as best as I can understand.

Characteristics:
Abundant in 1625, but declining
rapidly, with only hundreds of plants
being recorded recently; compact
umbels with no bulbils; seed producing

All info from page 4.

What do you think?

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2014, 20:26:26 »
Going back to this link:
http://heirloomonions.com/?page_id=728

and comparing what the thesis has to say about allium ampeloprasum var sectivum.  It seems that they are talking about a different plant altogether.  The thesis says:
A. ampeloprasum var.
sectivum Lued. (Pearl
onion)
Little pseudostem; bulbs, fertile seed;
large numbers of daughter bulbs

The drawing on the website has a rather large-stemmed leek with multiple smaller stems arising out of it.  If yours looks like that it is VERY different from say the Minogue onion.

If your leek is pearl onion (Perlzwiebel), then Minogue isn't because the plants are so much smaller.  As you have grown both, do you think they are the same species?

This is fascinating, no wonder there is such a huge confusion going on. 

Just wanted to add:  if the plants you got were from PFAF plants for a future, it is very likely they are some of the UK native species. 




« Last Edit: November 27, 2014, 20:29:52 by galina »

goodlife

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #14 on: November 27, 2014, 20:48:57 »
Code: [Select]
Perlzwiebel is something different according to the description in the thesis (let's assume that is the correct classification).Common names are so confusing and just like with any other plants, same names are used for entirely different plants.
But the 'perennial leek' link describe the plants, that I think I might have, very well...and the drawing in the link too. Mine definitely are leek not onion and they do grow quite robust plants too...one would not notice immediate difference to 'ordinary' biennial leek...until you spot the babies coming up.
Minoque is clearly onion...look, smell and taste wise. 

This afternoon I spent couple of hours digging through my 'old papers' to see if I still have copy of Future Foods old catalogue from 90's......but it looks like I have done too good tidy up last few years or so...SEE, one should never throw 'anything' away... :BangHead:..it would have been interesting to see what else they listed...I started wondering how this mixed up did happen..was it me ordering wrong stuff and then thinking it was Babington leek or they sending as babingtonii or just got stock mixed up.  :drunken_smilie:Either way...I'm not disappointed. Sadly Future Foods operated before all this internet 'hulabaloo' so there is nothing to be found in net...not yet anyway...

I'm going to make effort tomorrow and no matter how wet and horrid it is outside...I'll go and get some photos of  'my leek'.

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2014, 21:11:01 »
Oh - my mistake - Future Foods, not Plants for a Future catalogue.  Now that is going back a looooooong time.  Proprietor Jeremy Cherfas originally from what I remember, then another head of HSL after he left there.  Jeremy is still around and blogging (did a quick google search).  You could ask him - he should remember what they had in the catalogue and where it originated from  :happy7:

Point taken about onion Minogue, need to keep looking for a latin name there.   :wave:

« Last Edit: November 27, 2014, 21:13:05 by galina »

goodlife

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #16 on: November 27, 2014, 22:55:50 »
...and talking about wild leeks..[urlhttp://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-23754235][/url]

How did I missed this news ..it was only last year... :drunken_smilie:

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #17 on: November 28, 2014, 07:28:02 »
...and talking about wild leeks..[url http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-23754235 ][/url]

How did I missed this news ..it was only last year... :drunken_smilie:

What a stunning photo in the article.  The site 'South Stack' was also mentioned in the thesis as one of the few location where the rare Allium ampeloprasum var allium still survives.  Good to read that they had a record flowering year, because this wild leek does mainly propagate by seeds and makes no bulbils. 

Yes, the description of your leek sounds just like the Perlzwiebel, it should propagate from seeds too, make lots of daughter bulbs and have no bulbils according to the thesis - which is exactly how you describe it. 

One more question.  Babington Leek has a mild garlic flavour.  Does your leek taste like mild garlic?
 



« Last Edit: November 28, 2014, 07:55:02 by galina »

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #18 on: November 28, 2014, 07:30:38 »
Having been convinced that the seeds on my leeks were not viable since they seemed very soft and fail a germination test, they are now sprouting quite happily on the seed heads.    :BangHead:

Is this Babington Leek or another type of leek Digeroo?

galina

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Re: Babington's leek study
« Reply #19 on: November 28, 2014, 09:06:22 »
So are we saying that the Babington leek only comes from bulbils, so it must spread very slowly in the wild.   


Just read page 16 of the thesis, where the author goes to great lengths describing the advantages and disadvantages of propagation by seeds vs propagation (cloning) by bulbils.  The astonishing fact with high-diploid vegetables like leek is that propagation by cloning is more advantageous under many conditions.  The author describes garlic as being in transition from sexual to asexual propagation, with only the 'vineale' garlic still producing viable seeds.  Babington Leek is already only propagated by clones (3 different methods of cloning).  The Wild Leek,  allium ampeloprasum var ampeloprasum, which propagates from seed, but otherwise lives in very similar locations and looks similar to Babington leek, is actually the rare and endangered one!  Babington Leek on the other hand has been able to substantially increase in the wild.  Counterintuitive but apparently so. Interesting.   :glasses9: