Sweet cicely

Today at Old Sleningford Farm (it was the volunteer workday), I asked if I could take some sweet cicely seeds. It is said that its leaves can be used to sweeten rhubarb instead of sugar, which would be fantastic. Rhubarb with fewer calories as well as other health benefits!


Having done an internet search, gardeningknowhow.com suggests that sowing the seeds directly into the soil in autumn is the best way to propagate sweet cicely. So, that is what I will do, once the butternut squash have finished.

Watch this space… 

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About Helen

I have always been interesting in living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle and used to do what I could. Now, I have come to realise that we have reached such a point in terms of environmental degradation that it is more important - perhaps - to focus on building resilience. I therefore do as much as I can to reuse, grow my own and encourage a supportive community, for example. I also keep reading and learning all the time.
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6 Responses to Sweet cicely

  1. skyeent says:

    I would say you still need sugar, but it does take the edge off the acidity for rhubarb. You do end up with a strange green bit in your crumble which is a bit weird, but perfectly edible, I haven’t worked that out yet.
    I have read that sweet cicely needs a bit of cold to germinate, which is why you would autumn sow. In milder areas, it may need stratifying in the fridge to get a good chill to germinate.
    The seeds when green are a tasty garden sweetie. I can never resist them. They quickly get tough however. Logically you should be able to candy them like angelica but I haven’t tried that.

    • Helen says:

      So I’ll put the seeds in the fridge for a day or two now again before I sow then!

      Anyway, interesting to have your experiences of eating sweet cicely. I tried the fresh seeds at the farm where we do the volunteer workday and had assumed it was these that were used to sweeten rhubarb until I looked it up on Sunday.

      • skyeent says:

        Have a look at this site: http://www.seedaholic.com/sweet-cicely-myrrhis-odorata.html it has some useful notes about sowing. I expect in most of the UK it would be cold enough to just sow outside in autumn. If you have lots of seed you could save some till say February, give them the fridge treatment and then sow. I didn’t get great germination from the seed I sowed a few years ago, probably in retrospect it isn’t cold enough here. However you only need a few plants. You’ll get people asking why you’re growing cow parsley and you can surprise them with the smell!

  2. How nice to have some seeds and a plan.

I love to read about your own experiences and any other feedback you have, so look forward to your comments below.

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