Celery has both a pleasing snap and a convenient groove to keep something rich and creamy. Cooked, it gives the salads, soups, and stir-fries a delightful taste. And it only has 11 calories per cup.
Celery has a lot of health benefits that you may not consider. And though it’s not high in traditional nutrients, celery is filled with a lot of other kinds of good things that our bodies need to remain balanced.
The first and most critical factor when planning to grow a celery crop is obtaining quality seeds. Not just seed from which a significant percentage will germinate, but also possessing ample strength and vigor to give a strong start to the seedling. Since the seeds of celery are tiny, it is essential that only a small percentage of the amount typically sown will actually grow to ensure plant abundance.
Since low germination and the necessary strength are rarely found both in the same packet of seed, the desirable the seed is one which has a high percentage of germination.
A rich, mellow, sandy loam can produce the best results when growing celery in the garden. Garden bed soil should contain plenty of leaf compost, which should be filtered to the inch through a sieve of no fewer than six meshes. There is no need to sift the soil of the transplant bed too fine, and some well-rotted barnyard manure should cover a portion of the leaf compost; in other ways, it would be the same as the seedbed.
Celery can flourish in any moist, well-drained soil, but prefer a coarse, sandy loam. If nothing but clay soil is available, the liberal application of well-rotted barnyard manure can cause it to grow good celery. There is likely to be damage to clay soils caused by the clay being washed into the plants’ hearts when they are still low.
Ensure the celery is well-watered during all growth phases. Water deficiencies delay the production, cause stalks to become stringy, and allow plants to send up shoots.
Celery is a significant feeder. Upon planting and side-dressing plants with compost at midseason apply aged-compost to planting beds.
Celery usually doesn’t face severe pest problems, but can be attacked by miner celery leaf and slugs (while blanching).
Celery may be affected by pink rot, black heart, and blight. Be sure that the soil provides enough magnesium and calcium to prevent these diseases.
The period from planting to harvest is 100 to 130 days from seed transplants, about 20 days longer. A 10-foot row would yield approximately 20 celery heads. When the head is around two to three inches in diameter at the root, continue harvesting before the first hard frost. Cut the head down to or just below the soil level.
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