Caraway

  Caraway  

Heirloom. Organic. Caraway is considered a hardy biennial. It reaches a height of 8″ the first summer, and a height of one to three feet the following year, with a spread of 12″. Seeds are sown in situ (in position) in early spring or fall. Autumn planting is usually best, when the seeds are fresh. Plant seeds 1/4″ deep in rows 12″ apart. Caraway will self-seed in suitable conditions and germinates easily. Thin to 6″ to 8″ apart when seedling plants reach 2″ in height. Pinch to thin — caraway does not transplant well. Location chosen for planting caraway should allow full sun as it prefers lots of light. Plants will thrive in almost all regions except where extremely humid and warm. The tiny umbellate flowers are white to pinkish and show up in early summer. The leaves are feathery and light green, similar to carrot in appearance. Soil should be heavy and dry and allow for adequate draining. Mulch regularly.  Harvest seeds in second year after they darken. Seeds ripen in August. Unripe seeds will ripen as they dry. Cut heads and place upside down in paper bag. Place bag in a warm dry area for a few days and seeds will fall loose. Store in airtight container. Leaves can be gathered anytime and harvested throughout the season. Roots should be harvested in the second year if you wish to use them. The root resembles parsnip, but is smaller.

Planting Caraway

While starting seeds of the Caraway is not necessarily difficult, the right conditions will make the process successful.  Most gardeners sow Caraway Seeds directly in the ground in the spring when the threat of frost has passed. Keep the ground moist but not wet for the first couple of weeks. Pick a sunny, well-drained spot for planting for the best performance. Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position.  Heirloom / Open Pollinated Caraway are cool weather loving plants that prefer well drained loose soil and an even amount of water. Plant heirloom Caraway in rows or hills but make sure the soil is well warmed.  Germination should occur in 21-25 days in soil 70-85°F. 

In rows thin plants to or set out transplants 12-18" apart. Height:  8” First Year, 12-36  Second Year”   Spacing: 12-18" inches, 12-18 inches between rows Depth: 1/4  inch Germination: 21-25 days

Starting from Seed Indoors

  Do not try to transplant…this will not work well or at all.

Direct-seeding into the Garden

Turn over the area you've selected to a depth of approximately 2 inches. Rake the area until it's level and smooth. Water the area until the soil is damp but not saturated. Scatter the seeds in the area. Gently rake the area to distribute the seeds further and protect them from birds. Or, press the seeds into the soil and cover with no more than 1/4 inches of soil. You can also place 2 to 3 seeds every 12 inches in rows approximately 12-18 inches apart, and cover seeds with 1/4 inches of soil. Place planting stakes around the area so you will know where to water. Check on your seeds about once a day. Make sure to mist the soil whenever it appears dry. Germination for the Fennel plants is approximately 21 to 25 days, depending on the warmth of the soil. Some gardeners like to plant Fennel in small hills. 

Germination Problems

Growing plants from seeds successfully depends on a lot of factors and this makes it impossible to guarantee success on every batch of seeds planted.  Factors include, soil composition, PH, temperature, moisture levels, seed depth, soil density, seed viability, seed storage and many others.  We tested the germination of all our seeds and this seed variety is around 80%, but your results may vary based on exactly how you plant and all the environmental factors.  Good luck.