Sium sisarum (Skirret) [15 Seeds]

$4.25

Germination Information: I recommend these seeds for experienced seed-starters only, because they may require some patience and experimentation. One approach is to sow the seeds (1/2 inch deep) in a pot in fall to mid winter, setting them outdoors in a spot protected from mice so they can get a chilling period and then germinate when conditions are right in spring. I sowed mine in mid January and saw the first seedlings emerge in mid March, with more appearing over the next month or sow.

I also tried sowing some indoors, on a heat mat under lights. From a March 20 sowing, the first seedling appeared on March 29, with more over the next several weeks. So, that’s another option, if you want to give it a try. I’ve ready many mentions of these seeds being difficult to germinate, so you may want to try both cold and warm sowing and see which works best for you, expecting slow and erratic germination either way.

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Description

I first ran across skirret (Sium sisarum) when hunting for seeds of uncommon edibles. Uncommon it certainly is: widely grown in historical Europe, apparently, but rarely seen today. It is indeed edible, too, producing clusters of sweet-starchy, finger-thick roots. Each year, you can dig up and harvest some of the roots and then replant the rest for the following year. This perennial vegetable offered a bonus feature I didn’t expect: umbels of tiny white flowers that started in midsummer and continued well into October on 3- to 4-foot-tall stems, making the plant pretty to look at and attractive to pollinators as well.

This year (2020) was my first year growing skirret from seed, so if you are interested in more information, I recommend this article by a gardener who has much more experience than I do: Growing and Eating Skirret. Full sun to light shade. Perennial; Zones 5 to 8.

Collected in October 2020. At least 15 seeds.

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