Growing Angelica

Growing angelica from seed is easy to do. This herb will live for anywhere from two to four years and then it will flower and die after that so you will get a lot of use out of this herb. Plant some each year so you will always have some ready. The leaves, stalks, and roots can all be used.

You can grow Angelica plants in a semi-shady area. You will want to plant one every five feet, one-half inch deep, in well-draining lightly acidic soil. These plants will spread out and grow two to four feet wide. Angelica will grow to be four to six feet tall when it is mature. It is not a good plant for droughts as it prefers to be moist and cool.

Plant it in late summer or early autumn because the seeds need cold weather to germinate. By year two, you can begin to use the leaves and stalks if you like. The stalks resemble celery and can be steamed and eaten like asparagus. The roots can be candied and used to decorate cakes. The stems should be harvested in spring. The roots should be harvested in the fall. The leaves are used in tea and also used in salads and can be boiled like spinach. They should be harvested in May or June before the plant flowers. The tea is good for digestive problems as well as clearing bronchial tubes.

The roots look like large, pale carrots and can be cooked and eaten as well as to flavor liquors like chartreuse, gin, and vermouth.

Oil from the angelica root is put in the tub and used to create a calming bath with hot water.

If you want your plants to last longer, cut back the flower heads and the plant will last another one to two years. Once the flowers grow, seeds will form. When they fall off, gather them up and plant them if you would like additional plants.  Or leave them where they fall and they will re-seed themselves.  Before long you will have tons of Angelica plants.

Striking addition to fresh and dried bouquets.  Large, lobed leaves and thick, hollow stems. Leaves and stalks are sweet tasting. Because Angelica is a biennial, flowering begins early spring of the second year. Large, numerous blooms attract and feed beneficial insects and pollinators.  Plant this herb with your squash and other plants that need bees.

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