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Growing Celery

Growing Celery

Tango Celery

Tango Celery item #01754

A cool season biennial vegetable available in both stalk types and and Celeriac or "turnip rooted" forms. Dislikes hot climates and requires a fairly long growing season. Start seed indoors 10 to 12 weeks before the last frost in spring. Transplant seedlings to the garden after the last spring frost. Cover seed with ¼ to ½ inch of soil. Plant with the roots slightly deeper than when growing in pots. Cold night temperatures can cause early flowering, so Celery is best transplanted outdoors after night temperatures reach 55 °F. Space Celery plants 8 to 12 inches apart with 24 inches between rows and Celeriac plants 6 to 8 inches apart with 24 inches between rows. A packet of Celery seed contains about 250 seeds, and there are approximately 50,000 seeds per ounce. 

Maintenance

Celery is somewhat challenging to grow. Plant in full sun and fertile, moist, well-drained soil rich in organic matter. Plants are shallow-rooted, require consistent moisture, and benefit from mulching. Blanching for 7 to 10 days before harvest lightens the color of the stalks and gives them a milder flavor. Stems can be blanched by hilling soil around the stems or putting sleeves made from large cans or paper milk cartons around plant bases. Self-blanching varieties do not require this treatment. After harvest, stalks can also be blanched in hot water for 1 to 2 minutes before using to moderate the flavor. Stalks can be harvested individually as needed, or whole plants can be cut. If plants are cut an inch or two from the ground when harvested, a small secondary harvest of a few new shoots is often produced. Lower leaves of Celeriac plants naturally yellow and die in mid to late summer as the root matures. Harvest Celeriac in fall before frosts occur.

Fertilizer Recommendations

Use full rates of Algoflash All-Purpose Liquid Fertilizer 6-6-6 (51085), Nature's Source Plant Food Concentrate 10-4-3 (51012), or Neptune Fish & Seaweed Fertilizer 2-3-1 (51221).

Alternative Products

Cutting Celery (01758) is an easy-to-grow herb with a strong celery flavor. Celery is related to Parsley and Dill.

Complimentary Products

Celery is a heavy feeder that requires regular fertilization. Black Gold Earthworm Castings (54307) or Chickity Doo Doo 5-3-2.5 (74559) can be used to amend the soil at planting.

Product Recommendations

Use plantable 3" Round Jiffy Peat Pots (53226) when starting seed indoors to minimize transplant stress.

Celery Facts

Usually free of significant problems when sited properly. Carrot rust flies, nematodes, parsleyworms, tarnished plant bugs, blight, pink rot, and septoria sometimes occur. Celery has a long history of cultivation and was initially more commonly used as a medicinal herb than as a vegetable.

Growing Tips