Edible flowers - safe?

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Hi all!

Although it's now almost the end of April I'm still finding it relatively difficult to find fresh food for my little russian tort. I give him dandelion leaves and flowers in moderation as well as deadnettles which are everywhere at the moment, but mostly the Florettes Classic Crispy from the supermarket. I want to give him more variety! I have found this plant nursery near me:

https://westlandsuk.co.uk/

which grows edible flowers like pansies etc and have asked them if they use any chemicals etc in which they replied

'You'll be pleased to know that whilst we aren't Tortoise experts you can rest assured we only use bio-control on our edible flowers. This is a safe way to manage any unwanted pests that may appear from time to time.'

Would these be safe to feed Lionel the tort?

Thanks for any help,

Charlotte

PXL_20210421_114519159.jpg PXL_20210317_125613522.jpg
 

TheTattooedTortoise

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Ribwort and Broadleaf plantain are both great nutritious plants and grow wild near enough everywhere and anywhere in the UK.. well worth keeping an eye open as it's a great filler and most torts like it apparently. Mine certainly does anyway.
 

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Tom

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Hi all!

Although it's now almost the end of April I'm still finding it relatively difficult to find fresh food for my little russian tort. I give him dandelion leaves and flowers in moderation as well as deadnettles which are everywhere at the moment, but mostly the Florettes Classic Crispy from the supermarket. I want to give him more variety! I have found this plant nursery near me:

https://westlandsuk.co.uk/

which grows edible flowers like pansies etc and have asked them if they use any chemicals etc in which they replied

'You'll be pleased to know that whilst we aren't Tortoise experts you can rest assured we only use bio-control on our edible flowers. This is a safe way to manage any unwanted pests that may appear from time to time.'

Would these be safe to feed Lionel the tort?

Thanks for any help,

Charlotte

View attachment 323968 View attachment 323969
Seems like it will work.

You could also mix in some soaked supplemental pellets like the ZooMed. I think Komodo brand is readily available over there, and most UK members seem to like it.
 

Helen Ruff

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Hi, welcome to both you and Lionel !
I’m in the UK too so totally understand your issues at this period of the year when we trade off wild grown greens, supermarket food and dried supplements . It won’t be too long before the healthy greens start sprouting in the garden but it’s quits a difficult transition time.
I still rely heavily on Kale as all of my 8 torts adore it, but I do supplement with mini corn on the cobs and garden grazing too. Komodo do an excellent pellet feed .... I use the ‘fruit and flowers’ one which when hydrated with warm water is the equivalent of crack cocaine for tortoises! I wish you well.... so nice to chat to someone overcoming our climate in the UK but who love torts 🐢🐢
 

RosemaryDW

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That is a very small tortoise!

If it’s sold for human consumption, it’s fine for your tortoise.

That’s not to say that every plant they grow is tortoise appropriate. If it’s something you already know about, like pansies, fine. If you are buying a mix where you don’t have a good idea of everything that’s in it or can’t find it here, not so fine. I like to think of myself as a bit of a foodie and even so, I think some of these are pretty niche. Buzz button flowers, for example, are not for the faint of heart.
 

RosemaryDW

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Not a further answer to your question OP but wow, this nursery is fascinating. Cheese leaf plant? I had never heard of it until today and wow, tracking it down on the internet from a description that says only “tastes like cheese” and “Asian in origin” was a wild ride.

Should the question ever be asked in future, I do not think I would feed paederia lanuginosa (cheese leaf) or any of the paederias!
 
Joined
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Ribwort and Broadleaf plantain are both great nutritious plants and grow wild near enough everywhere and anywhere in the UK.. well worth keeping an eye open as it's a great filler and most torts like it apparently. Mine certainly does anyway.
Hey, yes always on the look out for these two. I just find that most plantain is in the middle of fields etc so is always trampled on and torn. I will keep looking though :)
 
Joined
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Seems like it will work.

You could also mix in some soaked supplemental pellets like the ZooMed. I think Komodo brand is readily available over there, and most UK members seem to like it.
Thanks Tom, yes I use the Zoomed Grassland supplement every few days which he loves :)
 
Joined
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Location (City and/or State)
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That is a very small tortoise!

If it’s sold for human consumption, it’s fine for your tortoise.

That’s not to say that every plant they grow is tortoise appropriate. If it’s something you already know about, like pansies, fine. If you are buying a mix where you don’t have a good idea of everything that’s in it or can’t find it here, not so fine. I like to think of myself as a bit of a foodie and even so, I think some of these are pretty niche. Buzz button flowers, for example, are not for the faint of heart.
Yes he's my little nugget! Thankyou for confirming I will buy a few pansies and others for him and see how we get on. Don't worry I am very strict on what I feed him and always check the tortoise table app first! I never feed him fruit either as he's a russian.
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location (City and/or State)
Midlands, UK
Hi, welcome to both you and Lionel !
I’m in the UK too so totally understand your issues at this period of the year when we trade off wild grown greens, supermarket food and dried supplements . It won’t be too long before the healthy greens start sprouting in the garden but it’s quits a difficult transition time.
I still rely heavily on Kale as all of my 8 torts adore it, but I do supplement with mini corn on the cobs and garden grazing too. Komodo do an excellent pellet feed .... I use the ‘fruit and flowers’ one which when hydrated with warm water is the equivalent of crack cocaine for tortoises! I wish you well.... so nice to chat to someone overcoming our climate in the UK but who love torts 🐢🐢
Yes I cannot wait until the mallow flowers start to show in the fields again, Lionel absolutely loves them. What torts do you keep?
 

RosemaryDW

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Yes he's my little nugget! Thankyou for confirming I will buy a few pansies and others for him and see how we get on. Don't worry I am very strict on what I feed him and always check the tortoise table app first! I never feed him fruit either as he's a russian.

Oh, I don’t mean to remain terribly strict for ever; some of the Tortoise Table’s feedback is based on mammal research, not reptile, so it isn’t necessarily applicable. Buttercups, for example, are shown by them as a NO NEVER DO NOT FEED NO when in fact that plant makes up a huge portion of the Russian’s native diet and they are readily available in many parts of the UK in the spring.

There is nothing wrong starting out conservative, especially with a such a little one. Just bear in mine that the Tortoise Table isn’t a bible; over time you may feel comfortable branching out with diet, often based on feedback from long-term owners here.
 

RosemaryDW

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Since your tortoise seems okay with some dry product you might take a look at some of the dried plant/flowers available to you; Shelled Warriors in the UK sells several, including a dried flower mix: https://www.shelledwarriorsshop.co.uk/dried-flowers-weeds-314-c.asp.There is also one with a few more flowers they say can be used as food or bedding. That second idea (bedding) sounds odd to me but it’s not a bad flower mix to offer: https://www.shelledwarriorsshop.co....-mix-250g---bedding-food-free-post-3029-p.asp. They’ve got an interesting product now that is mostly ground up tortoise plants and flowers, including cactus, with some calcium included; a meal topper, so to speak: https://www.shelledwarriorsshop.co....mix-of-herbs-and-calcium-free-post-3031-p.asp.

Our own Kapidolo Farms sells some great dried options and I understand his shipping rates to the UK are competitive but one of these small products may be a better trial run for such a little guy.
 

Lyn W

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Thanks for posting that.
It's an interesting website to know about, especially for the winter when weeds can't be found.
I took a walk yesterday and have found a safe spot for some lovely dandies but the plantains are slow to grow this year. Maybe now we've had a good downfall of rain today the weeds will start to thrive in Wales.
 
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