Celeriac is one of my favourite vegetables to grow as it stores well and has many uses in the kitchen. It is excellent roasted as an alternative to potatoes, and makes a delicious contribution to soups and sauces with its celery like flavour. Celeriac is much easier to grow than celery, and aside from flavour, looks very similar to celery with its stems and leaves. However, it is not the stems but the round bulbous crown of celeriac that is eaten, which swells at ground level as the plant matures (similar to beetroot). To encourage the crown to grow, outer leaves of the plant should be removed to channel the plants energy towards it.
Celeriac is relatively slow growing, and the seed should be sown in early spring indoors or under a protective cover, and planted out into their final growing position when the weather warms spaced about 12 inches or 30 centimetres apart. The plants may need covering with a net to stop birds nibbling the leaves, and should be watered regularly. The soil should not be allowed to dry out. By late August or early September the crowns should be large enough to eat. Celeriac stands well on an allotment or vegetable patch, and can be left in place through winter and harvested when required.
There are not many varieties of celeriac to choose from, with success mainly dependent upon growing the crop in fertile and moist soil.
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