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Articles about Vegetable Crops for the Garden

  Advantages of Container Vegetable Gardens
  Best Vegetable Crops for Containers
  Brandywine Tomatoes - Get the Most From This Heirloom Variety
  Choosing a Site For Your Home Vegetable Garden
  Container Vegetable Gardening Tips
  Container Vegetable Gardens
  Double Your Crops
  Getting Children Interested in Growing Vegetables
  Grow Your Own Salad
  Growing Tomatoes in Pots
  Growing Vegetable Plants Becomes More Than Just A Hobby
  How to Grow a Vegetable Garden
  Indoor Container Vegetable Gardening Ideas
  Indoor Vegetable Gardening How to Tips
  Learning About Indoor Container Vegetable Gardening
  List of vegetable crops by difficulty
  Mushroom Growing in Odd Unused Spaces
  Non Hybrid Seeds For Survival Gardening
  Organic Container Gardening - Simple and Easy Ways to Grow Vegetables and Flowers in Pots
  Organic Vegetable Cultivation Table
  Over Wintering Chilli Pepper Plants
  pH preferences of food crops
  Planning your Container Crops
  Planting Tomatoes Upside Down
  Potato Container Garden Tips
  Preparing a Vegetable Garden
  Review: Food4Wealth by Jonathan White
  Vegetable Container Garden Tips
  Vegetable Crops in alphabetical order by name
  Why I Recommend Vegetable Container Gardening
  Why Vegetable Container Gardening is Getting More Popular Today Than Ever
  How to grow organic Asparagus
  How to grow organic Aubergines
  How to grow organic Beetroot
  How to grow organic Broad beans
  How to grow organic Broccoli
  How to grow organic Brussels sprouts
  How to grow organic Cabbage
  How to grow organic Calabrese
  How to grow organic Carrot
  How to grow organic Cauliflower
  How to grow organic Celeriac
  How to grow organic Celery
  How to grow organic Celtuce
  How to grow organic Chinese broccoli
  How to grow organic Chinese cabbage
  How to grow organic Chicory
  How to grow organic Corn
  How to grow organic Cucumbers and Gherkins
  How to grow organic Endive
  How to grow organic Florence fennel
  How to grow organic French beans
  How to grow organic Garlic
  How to grow organic Globe artichokes
  How to grow organic Jerusalem artichokes
  How to grow organic Kale and borecole
  How to grow organic Kohl rabi
  How to grow organic Komatsuna
  How to grow organic Land cress
  How to grow organic Leaf beet
  How to grow organic Leeks
  How to grow organic Lettuce
  How to grow organic Mizuna
  How to grow organic Mustard greens
  How to grow organic New Zealand spinach
  How to grow organic Onions
  How to grow organic Parsnips and Hamburg Parsley
  How to grow organic Peas
  How to grow organic Peppers (hot and sweet)
  How to grow organic Potatoes
  How to grow organic Radishes
  How to grow organic Rocket
  How to grow organic Runner beans
  How to grow organic Salad onions
  How to grow organic Salsify, Scorzonera and Scolymus
  How to grow organic Seakale
  How to grow organic Shallots
  How to grow organic Spinach
  How to grow organic Squash
  How to grow organic Swede
  How to grow organic Texsel greens
  How to grow organic Tomatoes
  How to grow organic Turnips




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Organic Gardening:


How to grow organic Salsify, Scorzonera and Scolymus


by

Salsify
Salsify, or Vegetable Oyster

Salsify, Scorzonera and Scolymus

Tragopogon porrifolius, Scorzonera hispanica,
Scolymus hispanica


Family: Compositae (Group 4)

Salsify is also known as vegetable oyster (because of its taste), and scorzonera is sometimes called black salsify or viper's grass. Salsify is a hardy biennial, scorzonera a hardy perennial; both are used as root vegetables, and also for young shoots (chards), flower buds and flowering shoots. Scolymus, another member of the Compositae family, can be grown in the same way, and is sometimes called Spanish oyster, but is generally considered inferior.

Recommended cultivars

Salsify: Sandwich Island (Mammoth), Giant
Scorzonera: Russian Giant, Long Black
Scolymus: none in general cultivation

Site/soil

These root vegetables are best grown in an open position on deep, friable and stone-free soil, not recently manured.

Cultivation

Dig deeply in autumn and break down the clods. Rake in a general fertiliser such as blood, fish and bone (wear gloves) when preparing seedbeds.

Station sow 3 seeds 1cm (½") deep, salsify 20cm by 37cm (8"x15"), scorzonera 37cm by 10cm (15"x4") and scolymus 45cm by 30cm (18"x12"). Thin to 1 plant as soon as possible. Sowing takes place in early April to mid May. Keep well weeded and water in dry weather. Apply mulch in summer.

Production of chards

If chards are required, leave some of the roots in the ground when harvesting, cutting off old leaves 2.5cm (1") above ground level, and earth up with 12cm (5") of soil. Chards will be ready in spring.

Harvest

Roots can be lifted from October on. Take care not to snap them: they will be a foot long (30cm) and brittle. They are hardy and can be left in the soil until April (scorzonera even longer). Cover with cloches, straw or bracken in October to keep the ground workable, or lift and store as for carrots. If scorzonera roots are only pencil thick, leave them in the ground until the following autumn to thicken up.

Pests and Diseases

White blister causes shiny white blisters on the leaves; growth is stunted and root development is limited. Cut off and burn diseased foliage.





Article ©2004 Frann Leach. All rights reserved.

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