Home › Edible Gardens › Vegetables › Archive for Celeriac
By Amy Grant
Looking to expand your root vegetable garden? Celeriac plants just might be the ticket. So what is celeriac and where does celeriac grow? Read this article to learn more growing celeriac in the garden.
Ask A ProAsk a Question
You might also like…
On The Blog
Although Brussel sprouts date back to ancient Rome, they're named for the city of Brussels, Belgium, where they have been enjoyed since the 14th century. Part of the cabbage family, Brussels sprouts can be grown in just about any home vegetable garden as long as you have patience—they are slow-growing plants that require a long growing season.
If you seen Brussels sprouts only in the grocery store, you will delight in the striking appearance of their plant form: The numerous mini cabbage heads form along thick, 30-inch-tall stalks, along with bold, jutting stems and broad, cabbage-like leaves. The leaves are also edible and can be prepared like other hardy greens.
Like other vegetables in the Brassicaceae family, Brussels sprouts taste best after they have been subjected to cool weather. Usually, that means harvesting after a light frost or a snow. In cooler climates, they are best planted in early summer for a fall harvest. In warmer climates, they should be planted in late summer for a late fall or winter harvest.
|Botanical Name||Brassica oleracea (Gemmifera group)|
|Common Name||Brussels sprouts|
|Plant Type||Annual vegetable|
|Mature Size||30 in. tall, 8 to 12 in. wide|
|Sun Exposure||Full sun|
|Soil pH||Neutral (6.5 to 7)|
|Hardiness Zones||2 to 9|
Celeriac plants should be moved to the garden when about 10cm tall and hardened off before planting in their final positions. Plants that have been raised indoors will need to get used to the outdoor temperature and conditions before they can be planted outside, this will take about a week to 10 days depending on the weather.
The best way is to use a cloche or mini greenhouse. You can leave the cloche off the plants on dry frost free days and replace at night. Gradually increase the time with the cloche removed until the end of the week when you leave it off day and night. If the weather is mild you may not need the cloche, just move the plants outside for longer periods each day.
If you have started your seeds on a windowsill you will need to leave them in an unheated room for a day or two before moving outside to the cloche.
Celery – in the form of leaf, stalk and root celery – is grown throughout the world. It prefers temperate climates and cool growing conditions. Celery may also be grown as a winter crop in the desert.
Celery was originally a swamp plant and probably native to salt marshes in Europe and the Mediterranean. It seems to have first been cultivated in the Mediterranean, but primarily for medicinal purposes rather than food. The first recorded use of celery as food was in France, where it was used as a flavoring ingredient in the early 1600s.
Celery comes in three forms as well as the wild form.
Although many countries grow celery, the US remains the top producer, followed by Mexico. In Europe, celeriac or root celery is grown more frequently than stalk celery. In the Orient, Chinese or leaf celery is more commonly grown than either of the other forms. Many countries also grow celery for its seeds, which are used as a flavoring agent.
California and Michigan produce most of the celery grown in the US. The vastly different growing conditions mean that the California crop is typically grown in early spring or late fall. Michigan, which has colder winters and cooler summers, produces celery during a period when the California climate is too hot for growing good celery.
Unless you live in Hawaii or Alaska, you should be able to grow celery in any state in the US. The key is to understand its growing requirements and your local season. In warm season climates, start celery inside and early harvest before summer really gets going. In colder climates with a gradually warming spring, you may be able to direct seed celery. In the desert, you’ll do best growing celery as a winter crop.
No matter what your climate, you must meet celery’s demands for soil, nutrients and water. Celery prefers a rich soil that is moisture-retentive but also drains well. Enrich your soil with well-rotted manure, compost or leaf mold, and add organic 5-10-10 fertilizer. Never let the soil dry out. Grow in full sun but don’t try to grow celery in the heat of summer.