Greens see red
The setting could scarcely have been more Green: hard by the bio-diversity section of the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh.
There were veggie sandwiches on offer along with the obligatory bacon rolls.
The statutory charming infant was on hand, quietly munching on a copy of the manifesto.
But this was hard-edged politics nonetheless. Indeed, at some points, it sounded more Red than Green - although, of course, those two traditions have frequently overlapped in the past.
Patrick Harvie is a shrewd politician. He plainly sees a gap in the market, presented by the sundry efforts to cope with UK spending cuts as they impact on Scotland.
Mr Harvie is not for coping. Indeed, as he answered umpteen questions from the wicked media, he seemed to be tempted to break into a chant: "They say cut back, we say fight back."
But, while he joins the occasional protest, he also aspires to be a player, dealing with the "mainstream" parties as he calls them.
The Greens, you may recall, signed a pact with the SNP in the early days after the last election when Alex Salmond was still seeking chums.
That was before he discovered the joys of minority government.
In practice, little came of that pact. And the Greens' reputation with the mainstreamers rather came unstuck when Patrick Harvie and Robin Harper swithered over a deal which could have saved the SNP budget which, temporarily, fell.
The Greens blame last-minute intervention by the FM. Whatever, the other parties may tend to be somewhat cautious as a consequence.
The issue may not arise, of course. The Greens may not have the numbers.
The arithmetic, more generally, may not stack up. The Greens may refuse to bargain, pleading principle.
Their red lines, they say, are opposition to nuclear and coal-fired power stations; free education; and efforts to protect the poor from cuts.
The last one is open to interpretation.
The second would match either the SNP or Labour manifestos.
On the face of it, the first would present less of a challenge to the SNP than Labour, at least with regard to the principle of nuclear power (although not coal.)
And that "gap in the market"? Mr Harvie argues that his rivals are being pusillanimous.
Instead of coping, they should reverse the cuts and increase taxation in Scotland.
The Greens insist that their tax plans would benefit the bulk of folk who are on relatively low incomes and in relatively small properties.
But, on examination, there wasn't over much in the way of precise detail at the launch itself.
They intend to replace the council tax and business rates with a system of Land Value Taxation.
As Mr Harvie noted, this is an idea with an extended pedigree in radical politics.
The Greens say that folk who are currently in council tax bands A to E would benefit, roughly 85% they reckon.
Those above would pay more - as would "big business" and those who are leaving land unused.
This system, they say, would deter speculative landowners.
But what about the impact on business?
Small concerns, they insist, would not be hit. Larger companies could afford to pay.
Beyond that, they plan an increase in the basic rate of income tax, using the Scottish variable rate for the first time.
If cuts are still in process, there would be an increase of half of one per cent from 2013.
And what would all this buy? Investment in affordable housing, further and higher education, home insulation: £2.6bn for local authorities more generally.
They are against the Forth replacement crossing and the Aberdeen by-pass, preferring to fund public transport infrastructure projects.
And finally, sport. They favour "community ownership" of clubs to help Scotland's national game. (For the avoidance of doubt, that's football.)