Thursday, April 16, 2009


If you're like me, & you obsess over roots & sticks & scarecrows & weird things pertaining to Rustic Dynamism, the mangelwurzel will titillate your tootlehorn. The Mangelwurzel is German for "Chard Root", but is largely an English cultural phenomenon. It has been used for sport (mangold hurling), it has been hollowed out for All Hallow's Eve (the end products are called Punkies), it is great food for animals & can be fermented into a drink. The North Country Scrumpy & Western group the Wurzels take their name from the Mangelwurzel as does Worzel Gummidge. Tolkien fans might note a slight resemblance between Gummidge & Gammidge, as in Hob Gammidge who is some sort of distant relative of Sam Gamgee, thus, Sam Turnip, thus, Sam the country bumpkin.

Worzel Gummidge openers. Dr. Who transformed into a scarecrow with a turnip head.

The Wurzels - I am a Cider Drinker

"Riches more than mind can picture,
Wheat and barley, oats and hay,
Clover, beans and mangel-wurzels
Shall be ours upon that day."
from "Beasts of England" by George Orwell

And how to cook with mangel wurzels "the scarcity root". I'm going to try & procure some mangelwurzel seeds (also known as Swede Mangel) so as to grow my own.


  1. I'll be bum-swizzled! I'll just mark England off the list of countries to move to...

  2. So what did you think of them boys from Chideock?

  3. (Regarding the Pertwee segments...) Never thought I'd be homesick for a place I've never lived. England, that is, not New Zealand. And look! It's Frances Walsh! She's been hocking the rustic life for years now. Sam Gamgee, indeed!

    And thank you Allen, Carol, and Kim. "You can smell the cow-shit, too!"