The so-called wild chicory (cichorium endivia) is part of the asteraceae family. This perennial and bitter herb is the source of a wide variety of vegetable plants such as chicory chicory, chicory curly salad or coffee chicory. The wild chicory can be recognized by its ligulate flowers, generally blue. The adult plant measures between 40cm and 1m.
Culture of chicory
Whatever type of chicory you choose, you must reserve a sunny or semi-shaded location. Some varieties cannot stand the cold well. The soil must be prepared to avoid water retention which causes chicory to rot. The grooves, one centimeter deep, must be spaced about twenty centimeters. The seeds are then covered, the soil delicately packed and then sprinkled with rainwater. To optimize the development of chicory, it is recommended to thin the crop by transplanting the young shoots (6 to 7 leaves) with a distance of 30cm between each.
Chicory is a rustic plant which does not require much maintenance. Watering is moderate. You just have to be careful to protect the plant from harsh winters. In order to limit the bitterness of chicory, it is advisable to bleach two weeks before harvest. To do this, the leaves must be tied together towards the center, which will deprive them of light. Chicory does not keep well, which is why it is more prudent to harvest it as you go.
Endive flies, slugs and snails are the insects interested in chicory plants. Sprinkling the feet of the plant with ash is a good way to disinterested.
Use of chicory
In the kitchen, the roots and leaves of chicory are eaten in many salad recipes. A medicinal plant since antiquity, chicory has depurative and laxative properties. Find the chicory seeds from the shop!