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Salsify - Mammoth Sandwich Island : Heirloom creamy-white roots with oyster-like flavor.

Salsify - Mammoth Sandwich Island

Tragopogon porrifolius

HEIRLOOM -A hearty vegetable with creamy-white roots and oyster-like flavor. Roots can winter over. A versatile plant grown as an ornamental for its lovely pink and yellow flowers, as an edible root, and for use in herbal medicine. The flavor sweetens in the cold. Herbal medicine enthusiasts prize salsify for its diuretic and tonic properties while gourmands enjoy the nutty, complex flavor. Nutrients: vitamins C, B6, folate, riboflavin, calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium and manganese. (1 Gram Packet)  

Regular price $0.00 $2.50 Sale

Average Seed / oz Seed / 100' Row Average Yield / 100' Row Days to Harvest
2,100 1 oz NA 100-150
Planting Season Ideal Soil Temp Sun Frost Tolerance
Spring/Fall 40-70°F Full Sun Moderately Tolerant
Sowing Method Seed Depth Direct Seed Spacing Seeds Per Packet
Direct Seed 1/2" 1-2" 95
Mature Spacing Days to Sprout Production Cycle Seed Viability
5" 15-28 Biennial 1-2 years

Site Selection

Salsify is a hardy biennial that prefers full sun. Plant in loose, well-drained, fertile soil that is free of rocks. Provide adequate moisture when young and once established, salsify will tolerate dry conditions.


Salsify is a long season, slow-growing plant which is best matured in cool weather. Direct seed outdoors in early spring in colder climates and late summer-early fall for overwintering in milder climates.

Sow seeds 1/2-3/4" deep with 1/2" between seeds and 12-18" between rows. Optimal soil temperature for germination is 55-75°F. Seeds will sprout in 15-28 days. Thin to 3" for mature plants.


Roots are ready for harvest in approximately 100-120 days. Overwintered plants can be harvested until April.

Seed Saving

Salsify has a bluish-purple, perfect flower not to be confused with the yellow flowered T. pratensis which grows wild. There are also many types of wild salsify which will cross with your plants, so you'll want to cage if you're not sure what is growing within ½ mile of you. In cold climates the plants are dug and stored in sand or sawdust for replanting the following spring. In warm climates heavy mulching should be enough protection. When the flowers fade, seed capsules develop which flatten at maturity and release the seed. Remove the fluff from your seed harvest and dry for a few extra days before storing.