(Perilla frutescens) An eye-catching plant notable for its beautiful color contrast of green leaf tops and vibrant purple leaf bottoms, with a pleasantly pungent aroma. This particular variety likely stems from the Vietnamese Tia To, although Chicago-area Paw Paw and Asian Pear farmer Oriana Kruszewski has let it self-sow on her farm for 20 years now, and its original provenance is lost to history. Eric and Erica loved the deep flavor and vivid color of Oriana's shiso, but she had no seed, so they set a flowering bunch in a glass of water and matured seed on a Chicago windowsill. Oriana reports that it is excellent for making umeboshi, all kinds of pickles, and tea. A surprising hit in the heat of summer is fresh leaves brewed as a sun tea, lightly sweetened with honey and carbonated to make a shiso soda. The serrate leaves may be picked at any stage, and both flowers and leaves may be dried and used in tea. 2-3' plants when grown outdoors, but reaching head height if left to mature in a greenhouse. And if you find, like we do, that your plants are overly abundant, the addition of them to a flower bouquet is as pleasing as it is fragrant!
70-80 days. UO
Packet: 100 seeds