Growing Capers

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How to Grow The Caper of Commerce

The Caper of Commerce is a perennial shrub growing from 3 to 4 feet high, of which the flower buds are gathered and used for making sauce and flavoring soups and stews. Capers have a sharp piquant flavor and add pungency, a peculiar aroma and saltiness to pasta sauces, pizza, fish, meats and salads. The flavor of caper may be described as being similar to that of mustard and black pepper.

The plant is easily grown in warm districts, and does particularly well in a climate where Olive trees can be grown profitably.

The caper is extremely versatile with multiple edible parts, The Caper of Commerce is in fact the immature flower bud picked before it opens into flower. Buds that are left to flower then ripen into Caperberries which can be pickled for use in condiments if picked before they ripen and burst open.

Growing capers from seed

The plants are raised from seed or propagated from cuttings. Sow the seed a seed box kept in a warm place or in a hot bed, and when the seedlings are large enough, harden off thoroughly and plant out into their permanent position, allowing at least 3 feet between each plant.

The Caper requires dry stony ground and does well on embankments and similar places which could not otherwise be utilised. The roots are particularly strong and vigorous, and if they can get deep enough even amongst rocks and stones, will continue to grow for several years. The flower buds, which should be gathered when about the size of peas, form the Caper of Commerce. The plants should be cut back every three or four years.

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