How do you grow salsify?
Posted by Dobies Staff on 07 August 2014 02:13 pm

The best soil is a really fertile sandy loam but well cultivated heavier soils to which sharp sand has been incorporated and worked to a friable condition will produce good crops of this vegetable. As with other root crops, avoid stony and freshly manured soil to prevent the roots forking.

Sow the Salsify seeds between March and April in a bed of finely soil covering the seed 1cm (½″) of soil of compost. As soon as the seedling are large enough to handle, they should be thinned to 15cm (6") apart.

The roots are ready for harvesting in September or October through to spring. Great care must taken to avouid damage to the roots when lifting or they they will bleed and this will give the flesh a muddy appearence shot with shades of pink and some flavour loss will result.

Any roots left in the ground can be forced into growth the following spring to produce tender, white shoots known as salsify chards. To do this, simply draw the soil over the roots when they begin to sprout. Covering  them
in a small mound of soil 15-20cm (6-8″) high. When the elongate pale shoots are poking above the surface, they can be uncovered and harvested.

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