Growing Salsify, also Vegetable oyster

Tragopogon porrifolius : Asteraceae / the daisy family

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

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

  • P = Sow seed
  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 10°C and 30°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 15 - 20 cm apart
  • Harvest in 14-21 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Beans, Brassicas, Carrots, Celeriac, Endive, Kohl-rabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Alliums, Spinach
  • Harvested salsify roots

This root vegetable is not seen in supermarkets but is as easy to grow as carrots or parsnips.

It is a fairly slow growing vegetable but can be harvested in small amounts as required. The ground can be loosened with a fork and a few roots lifted for use.

Scorzonera is a variety of salsify which has black skin on the root.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Salsify

Wash and scrape the roots then boil before frying or roasting. They can also be used to make a creamed soup.

Your comments and tips

03 Jan 22, Kathy (Australia - temperate climate)
I grew white salsify....never again! They say its best to grow for 2yrs for taste,well they went to seed like a giant milkweed head i had to cut them off and bag them before they blew away and contaminated my whole garden and into the surrounding paddock! Wasnt impressed with that or the couple i pulled to taste, i ripped the lot out after the 3rd time trimming the puff hindsight probably dont take growing advice and wait the extra harvest time..btw? If anyone wants FREE SEEDS i have two bags full of 2021 crop (couldnt bring myself to toss em! ),your welcome to them,will post to out at Tamworth nsw.
20 Dec 21, Peter Sguazzato (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi all Peter here from Narre Warren Vic, I’m looking at planting White Salsify, I have never planted them nor tried them, should I plant them in a deep tub so I know where they are and what time of the year should I plant them here in Narre Warren, I look forward to your comments, happy Gardening, Peter Sguazzato
21 Dec 21, (Australia - temperate climate)
In the orange tab near the top of the page go to Vegetables and Herbs find Salsify and it will tell you. Make sure your climate zone is temperate.
19 Mar 21, Michele Aarons (Australia - temperate climate)
How can l buy 1 packet of Salsife seeds. I am in Victoria AUSTRALIA and l not sure if they going to grow.We have a very hot summer and can be frost in winter. Thanking you. Michele
22 Mar 21, Anonymous (Australia - temperate climate)
Try an on-line search for it
17 Sep 19, Mandy Eastland (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi Hanna I have just read your post from 2018..about salsify seeds...I live in Mandurah. first tasted this in Germany on my visit last year. My sister has given me a great recipe..but where to get it from remains a mystery. I would be grateful if you could point me in the right direction as to where I could buy some the way ..are you still having luck with your plants? Many thanks Mandy
22 Jan 20, Laura (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi Mandy, I recently bought some salsify seeds from They currently have two varieties available. I can't wait to taste it! The variety I purchased is said to be like asparagus and oysters, yummy! Good luck :)
18 Sep 19, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Hi Mike here - go to Boondie seeds website - click on Vegetables - go to
18 Sep 19, Anon (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
go to other seeds, find them in there.
02 Jul 19, Susan parker (Australia - arid climate)
I’m in Northam, Western Australia I’d love to grow salsify. Where can I get seeds. When do I plant?
Showing 1 - 10 of 86 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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