Les Champs – The Fields
France remains an agrarian country and a drive from Paris to the south, or any points north, east, or west, will reveal rolling fields of wheat, rye, or barley, dotted here and there with the spires of Gothic churches and villages. The fields might be of sunflower, alfalfa, safflower, or in, the south, lavender. It’s not uncommon in spring to see the fields, especially those of grain, splashed with red poppies, the poppies so eloquently written about by John McCrae in his famous World War I poem, In Flanders Field, and those painted by Claude Monet in Poppies at Argenteuil. In summer, you’ll see fields of sunflowers, like those famously painted by Vincent Van Gogh.
La Vie Rustic Sunflower Seed Collection
I grew lots of different sunflowers last summer to select the ones I really liked. I was looking for a range of color of both the petals and the faces, of differences in petal shapes because I wanted to find the sunflowers that most closely represented the sunflowers painted by Van Gogh in his famous series of seven paintings of sunflower bouquets in vases. On close inspection of the paintings you’ll see the differences among the flowers. Some have wild-looking, spidery petals, others petals are thickly packed like chrysanthemums, and yet others double or single petals. The centers or faces differ as well. Some centers are bright chartreuse green, other chocolate brown or black ringed with orange. Petal colors are brilliant yellow, pale orange, darker orangish-red, reddish, and pale yellow. This link will take you to a site where you can see the seven paintings in the series. http://www.vggallery.com/misc/sunflowers.htm.
When you grow our collection of six different sunflowers you’ll have an array as varied as the sunflowers shown in Van Gogh’s paintings.
All the sunflowers in the collection are cutting flowers, and all are branching types which mean, in addition to a main flower head on the center stalk, there will be numerous side shoots branching out ensuring ongoing bloom over several weeks or longer.
Each individual letterpress printed packet contains approximately 25 seeds. All germinate within 7-14 days and bloom within 60- 65 days of planting
Greenburst – Golden yellow flowers are semi-double with a green center ringed by a row of small, dark yellow petals. Branching, grows 4 – 6 feet tall.
Orange Ruffles – Orange-yellow flowers have curling, spidery outer petals, and a black center ringed with small, frilly dark orange petals. Branching, grows 4 – 6 feet tall.
Lemon Éclair – Light yellow, multi-layered flower have fluffy inner petals and more pointed outer ones. The center is chocolate colored. Branching, grows 4-6 feet tall.
Terracotta – Orangish-red terracotta flowers have almost daisy-like petals, and a dark brown center. Branching, grown 4-6 feet tall.
Golden Cheer – Fluffy, dark yellow double flowers have a green center ringed with short, dark yellow petals. Branching, grows 4 -6 feet tall.
Chianti – Dark red, wine –colored petals surround a very dark, almost black center. The stems also have a dark tint. Branching, grows 4- 6 feet tall.
Field of Red Poppies and Bishop’s Lace Seeds with Rice Hulls for Ease of Spreading
La Vie Rustic has mixed red poppy seeds with Bishop’s Lace seeds, Ammi majus, which is acultivated version of Queen Anne’s Lace, along with California rice hulls for ease of scattering. With these, you can create your own iconic red poppy fields to wander in, cut bouquets from, or perhaps, even to paint or simply to admire while sipping an aperitif. Plant this mixture of Red Poppies and Bishop’s Lace flowers wherever you would like a swath of color and romance. Photo above by Thomas Kuoh
Contents: 7 grams Red Poppy and Ammi majus seeds, rice hulls and complete growing instructions, enough to plant 2000 square feet.
Germination: 5 to 7 days
When to plant: in fall in warmer climates and spring in colder climates.
Grillade Bundles Set of 6 – Photograph by Thomas Kuoh
The unquestioned fuel of preference in France for le grillade, grilling, is either grapevine stalks or, failing those, grape vine prunings, called sarments. Of course, the stalks are only available when a vineyard has been pulled out. In that case, the pulled vines are stacked and carefully guarded until needed. However, every year, without fail, there are prunings. The stalks and prunings burn very hot, but briefly, and add a smoky, woodsy flavor to steaks, chops, and sausages, which are the main choices for grilling, along with the occasional slices of pork belly, handily marked bon pour le barbeque. (Barbeque in French means grilling.)
So, La Vie Rustic has put together a combination of table grape prunings from our small farm and grape rootstocks from a neighboring vineyard (these are the small ones used for grafting) to create a set of 4 Grillade Bundles for grilling, French style.The prunings are about 8 -inches long and fit nicely into Weber and other similar barbeque grills. Each bundle is enough to grill several steaks or chops. See Le Grillading in blog posts on this site for a great recipe for grilling over grapevines from Denise and Jean-Pierre Moulle’s James Beard-nominated book, French Food, along with photos.
Remember, for grilling with grape vine prunings, first build a fire, either wood or charcoal and when coals have formed, undo the string and toss a bundle of prunings onto the hot coals. When the prunings have burned to bright coals, it’s time for French-style grilling.
Temporarily out of stock