It’s Saint David’s Day on Sunday, so I found myself today in a field of leeks doing a piece for the end of the news programme. Apart from getting very muddy shoes, I also learnt a lot of stuff about this humble root vegetable.
It was farmed by the ancient Egyptians. Roman Emperor Nero loved leeks. He thought it improved his singing voice. I doubt anyone would tell him he wasn’t a great crooner. You don’t get many tyrants on X Factor, because they don’t like the criticism.
The leek arrived in Wales via Phoenecian traders. They swapped leeks for tin. I think they came out tops in that deal, but I find leeks a bit oniony. Which is odd because I like onions.
In 640 AD the Welsh King Cadwallader made his troops wear leeks in their hats to distinguish them from the Saxon invaders. The Welsh won a great victory and the leek became the national symbol.
Also if a young woman puts a leek under her pillow on St David’s night she will dream of her future husband. This may or may not work, but it’s worth a go.