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Growing French tarragon

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
    S P P              

(Best months for growing French tarragon in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays. P = Plant in the garden.

  • Plant cuttings or root division. Best planted at soil temperatures between 50°F and 77°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 16 - 24 inches apart
  • Harvest in 30-40 days. Pick leaves when young for best flavour.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Aubergine (Eggplant) and Capsicum (Peppers)
  • New Spring growth
    New Spring growth

French tarragon a half hardy perennial herb that is native of southern Europe. It is frost tender - which may be one of the reasons that it is not particularly widely grown - French tarragon is easy to grow but rarely sets seeds. It is propagated by division, or from cuttings.
Seed grown tarragon is usually Russian tarragon which does not have such a good flavour.

French tarragon must have a sunny position The site should be sheltered from winds and winter frosts. Keep well watered in dry weather. In autumn, mulch plants with a thick layer of straw or similar, to protect it over the winter. Tarragon prefers well-drained soil which is not too high in nutrients. It will do equally well in full sun or partial shade. 

Culinary hints - cooking and eating French tarragon

Tarragon goes well with fish, pork, beef, poultry, game, potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, and most vegetables.  Tarragon can be used in cream sauces, herbed butters and vinegars, soups, sour creams, and yogurt.
However, it can be overpowering in large amounts.

Your comments and tips

22 Feb 17, Martin Gillion (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Any idea where I can buy F Tarragon plants in Auckland - North Shore?
23 Feb 17, John (Australia - temperate climate)
Plant Zero in Aucklnd list French Tarragon. There may be others. P: 0275197108
23 Jan 15, annette (South Africa - Dry summer sub-tropical climate)
French Tarragon plants are available at Ferndale Nursery in Brommersvlei Road - I bought a beautiful one on 18th January 2015! Usually you can only get tiny and weak growing ones!
03 Sep 14, Michelle (South Africa - Dry summer sub-tropical climate)
Looking for French Tarragon cuttings/ seedlings - cant find in Cape Town. Is it too early? anyone have?
28 Aug 14, Alton (South Africa - Dry summer sub-tropical climate)
Hi, I am desperately looking for a French tarragon plant, can anyone help me with a rooted cutting. Cape Town
22 Oct 14, Glynis (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Hi, I have also been searching for a French tarragon plant in the Cape, since I have been living here for a year and a half. I am in the Fish Hoek area. If you have managed to find one please let me know where you got it so I may also try. Thank you so much Glynis.
18 Apr 14, Valda (Australia - temperate climate)
what's the variety of Tarragon that is sold by Woolworths, in Queensland? How does French differ front Russian?
29 Mar 14, Jacquie (South Africa - Dry summer sub-tropical climate)
Found some French Tarragon (Artemesia dracunculus) at the Stellenbosch market this morning at the plant staff. First time I've seen it there. Confusingly the botanical name for Russian tarragon is very similar (Artemesia Dracunculoides Pursch) and no good for cooking.
19 Aug 13, Robyn (Australia - temperate climate)
Where could I get a French Tarragon cutting? Do nurseries sell them or just the Russian variety?
02 Mar 15, patrick (Australia - temperate climate)
diggers club sells it.
Showing 1 - 10 of 23 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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