This salad plant is ideal by itself or used as part of a salad. It can even be made into a superb cold soup for those summer days.
The seeds are commercially grown in water but are quite happy to grow in garden soil as long as they are kept well watered.
Sowing time can be staggered to give a good crop all year.
Sow the seeds after mid spring when the ground has warmed up.
Sow the seeds in very shallow drills about 7.5cm (3in) apart, and cover with a sprinkling of soil.
As they need a lot of water it may be best to grow them at the bottom of a 10cm (4in) trench.
This method will provide a trough that can be watered into to make sure they receive all the water.
Thin the seedlings to about 10cm (4in) and water very regularly throughout the season.
Keep weed free. The plants can be harvested when they have become strong and well developed.
Trim the tops of the plants with sharp scissors. Do not cut to far down the plant as they need a long stem to produce side shoots that can then be harvested.
They can also be grown in containers.
Put 4-5 seeds in a 30cm (12in) pot and stand the pot in a saucer of water with a depth of 2-3in.
Place the pot in a shady spot.
Keep the water topped up to 2-3in all season.
They should produce a crop from early summer right up to Christmas if kept protected.
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