Crisp and crunchy celery can be a little tricky to grow but it's worth it for the fuller-flavour of homegrown sticks
Growing calendar
Sow indoors Mid Mar-mid Apr
Plant out Late May-mid Jun
Harvest Aug-Feb

Celery needs warm temperatures to germinate and moist ground to grow successfully. Prepare the bed the previous autumn, adding plenty of well-rotted compost.

How to grow celery

Sow seed 0.1cm deep in pots, and place somewhere warm and light. Harden off towards the end of May and transplant 15-30cm apart. Traditional 'trench' varieties should be planted in a 10cm deep trench, backfilling with leftover soil.

However, it's much easier to buy self-blanching varieties these days, which do some of the 'blanching' work for you. These need to be planted in a block so they shade each other.

Water well in dry weather. They'll also appreciate a mulch.

Harvesting and using celery

Dig up as required from mid-summer. Finish harvesting self-blanching varieties before frosts and trenched plants from October. Harvest before the leaves yellow.

Tips on growing celery

Celery can bolt easily when temperatures are too cold, so hold off planting out until night temperatures are at least 10C.

Growing notes
Difficulty Tricky
Germination time 12-18 days
Average time to harvest 25 weeks (self-blaching), 40 weeks (trench)
Equipment needed Newspaper (optional0
Average plant size 45cm tall, 30cm wide
Family group to grow with Apiaceae: carrot, parsnip
Key nutritional content Vitamin C
Seed saving notes Biennial, needs isolation