Tragopogon porrifolius

Purple salsify

If you get bored with this plant or don't like the look of it then just eat it. 

It's a biennial vegetable from the Mediterranean that has naturalised in the UK and was first recorded in the wild in Britain in 1695. 

The long tap root of purple salsify can be boiled and has a taste very similar to oysters apparently. This root also exudes a white sap that can be turned into chewing gum. 

We saw this in flower and couldn't resist despite it being biennial. A tall plant with long grass like foliage and the most stunning purple daisy like flowers. 

The seed-heads resemble dandelion fluff on steroids and will self seed in abundance. It is happy to grow on heavy clay as well as sandy soils in full sun and may require staking.

Photo: Blackstem Plants

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Family

Plant type

Hardiness

Height

Spread

Foliage

Flower

Soil

Position

?

Asteraceae

Biennial

H5

70cm 

30cm 

Mid green 

Purple

Clay, sandy 

Full sun

Shepherds Lodge•Clay Hill Road•Lamberhurst•Kent•TN3 8LT

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