Watercress - 500 Seeds
Other names are known:
Xi Yang Choy, Sai Yeung Tsoi, Uotakuresu, Mustapa, Xa Lach Son, Phakkat-Nam, Lampaka, , Amat, Pakthoy, Cencil, Jembrak, Selada Air, Gejembrak, Sesawi Tanah, Semanggi
Watercress seeds produce a perennial creeping that is rich in vitamins and has a delicious, distinctive taste for salads and vegetarian dishes. Little, dark-green leaves grow on crisp stems that come from thick, long roots. Direct-seed watercress about 5mm deep and 1cm apart, ideally in full sun near clear running water. Thin plants to 10cm (4") and keep very well watered. Watercress does not thrive in acidic soil, so spread enough lime in the growing area to bring the pH as close to 7.0 as possible. Well finished compost is the other trick that will keep watercress growing rapidly. If you fail with watercress in your summer garden, try planting it beneath a cloche row cover for winter harvesting. The low light levels and cool temperatures seem to be ideal.
All parts of the plant can be used, raw or cooked and impart a spicy, peppery taste. The leaves may be used fresh in salads, sandwiches and garnishes. Alternatively, they may be used cooked in casseroles, stews or soups and in butter, spreads and sauces. Watercress is very popular in Asian cuisine.
Watercress is high in vitamins and minerals so there is a general health benefit from using watercress in meals on a regular basis. Although the Western world uses watercress in meals, the Eastern world continues to use watercress for its health benefits. For example, watercress soup in Asian cuisine is seen as beneficial for mouth health, protecting against gingivitis, ulcers, swollen gums and general health. Watercress is also viewed as being useful in the recovery period after illness, or colds and flu due to the high vitamin and mineral content.
Watercress has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-pyretic, is a potent diuretic, benefits arthritis sufferers, helps dermatitis and eczema, and has expectorant qualities to help respiratory illness.
Propagation notes will be supplied with a seed packet.
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