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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 out (transplant) seedlings

  • 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

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

06 Jan 19, adrian (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Is it possible for French Tarragon to survive in Brisbane's climate? If so what special things if any should to do?
06 Jan 19, Mike Logan (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Read the notes here it tells you how to look after it in sub tropical climate.
12 Dec 18, Derek (New Zealand - temperate climate)
my french tarragon took off like a rocket in early spring, now has dwindled away. Should I spread and replant what's left of the tubers, or wait and hope for next spring?
13 Dec 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Look on the internet - how to grow tarragon - pay attention to how long it grows when to harvest etc.
21 Aug 18, Jennifer Fitzsimmons (Australia - temperate climate)
Where can I buy a French Perennial Tarragon I live on the Mornington Penninsular Victoria
29 Aug 18, Marcelle (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
It is available from The Diggers Club and at the Heronswood garden shop in Dromana. Call ahead to make sure it is in stock.
23 Jun 18, Anne-Marie (Australia - temperate climate)
My french tarragon that I have been growing for approx. 3 years now is growing more as a prostrate plant than an upright plant. The height is probably only about 7.5 cm but it has lots of long ground covering branches. Do you have any thoughts on why this would be so? Please use my e-mail address for your response. Much appreciated. Anne-Marie
15 Jun 19, Ii (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I have exactly the same issue and find that the taste is overpowering and bitter, and the leaves are small. It’s not as sweet as the tarragon I know. Did you find a solution?
31 Jul 18, kelvan (Australia - temperate climate)
Cut plant to ground level in winter.Pull up and divide your plant/s early spring.
28 Jun 18, Mike L (Australia - temperate climate)
Try a new planting from different stock.
Showing 1 - 10 of 39 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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