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(Plant heights are given at maturity)

Chicorium endiva, Chicorium intybus    For growing instructions and seed specs, see Cultivation.  For garden chicory grown for salads, see Endive or  Radicchio

Wild Chicory

Wild Chicory (Anchicoria, Barbe de Capucin, Blaue Wegwarte, Blue Sailors, Kasni, Kiku-Niga-Na, Succory, Zikorifa, Chicon) Cichorium intybus  Full sun; plant height: 2-4ft.
#1387  Packet   $6.50   Approximately 100 seeds
#B4z-1387    Bulk seed    4oz   $16.89
#B1-1387    Bulk seed    1 lb.    $29.25


This member of the Aster family, Asteracaea, is a Euoropean native and an is a extremely useful plant that has established itself all over North America.  It is easily grown from seed (ususally as an annual, though it is a perennial plant).  The deep tap root makes it unsuitable for transplanting, so it is best to plant it where it is to remain.  The plant contains a milky sap and the lavender-blue daisylike blooms remain on the plant for only a single day. 

Propagation is by sowing seed in fall or spring and is best done as a direct sowing into a prepared space.  Prepare soil in an area that receives at least 8 hours of sunlight per day.  Dig the area, then rake the ground to remove all large clods, stones and debris.  Sow 1 seed per inch in rows 18-24 inches apart, then step on the seed to cover.  One can also broadcast seed over the prepared area, then walk over the seed area to press it into the soil.  Keep the seed area moist until seedlings emerge, then provide water during dry spells until they are established. 

In the United States, during the Civil War and again during WWII, chicory was served as a coffee substitute - the older the root, the more bitter the drink.  Leaves are eaten as a salad green, preferably in winter, when a great deal of the bitterness is gone from the plant.  Blooms are eaten in salads, and roots are cooked and eaten like parsnips.  The plant contains a large proportion of inulin (a starch undigestible to humans), which renders it useful in the production of alchohol.

HARVEST:  Pick leaves at any time once the plant is established.  Dig roots in the second season as needed.

SEED SPECS:  Average 26,625 seeds per ounce;  Seeding Rate: 1oz per 525 sq ft,  5lbs per acre


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