Tips for cultivating celeriac successfully


Celeriac, or Apium graveolens var. rapaceum, is a root vegetable closely related to celery. It is known for its thick and knobby root that has a unique taste and texture. Celeriac is best grown as a plug plant and requires a few key factors to grow well.

One of the most important aspects of growing celeriac is selecting the right variety. There are several varieties to choose from, each with its own unique qualities and uses. Some varieties have been grown for centuries and are considered heirloom varieties. These varieties are often preferred by growers who value the history and flavor of traditional vegetables.

Celeriac is a cool-season crop, meaning it prefers to be grown in cooler temperatures. It can be sown directly in the ground after the last frost in spring or started indoors in late winter for transplanting. Celeriac requires fertile soil that is rich in organic matter and moisture-retentive. It also needs plenty of space to grow, as the plants can reach a height of up to 2 feet.

When planting celeriac, it is important to sow the seeds shallowly and cover them with a thin layer of soil. The seeds can take some time to germinate, so be patient and keep the soil moist until the seedlings emerge. Once the seedlings have grown a few inches tall, they can be thinned to allow for proper spacing. Celeriac plants should be spaced about 12-18 inches apart to allow for optimum growth.

Harvesting celeriac is a process that requires patience and careful handling. The roots of the plant are the edible part and can be harvested when they have reached a size of about 3-4 inches in diameter. Celeriac can be stored for several weeks if kept in a cool and moist environment.

Celeriac has a wide range of culinary uses and is often used in soups, stews, and salads. It can be eaten raw or cooked, and its flavor can be described as a combination of celery and parsley. Celeriac is also a rich source of nutrients and contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are beneficial for health.

If you are a grower looking to add celeriac to your garden, it is important to have a reliable source of information. The internet can be a great tool for finding information on growing celeriac, but be sure to use reliable sources such as university extension websites, gardening forums, and heirloom seed catalogs. These sources can provide valuable insights and answer any questions you may have about growing celeriac.

The origins of celeriac can be traced back to ancient times. It is believed to have originated from wild celery, which grows in marshy areas in Europe and Asia. The cultivation of celeriac can be dated back to the 17th century, and it has been grown in America since the early 19th century.

Celeriac is a versatile vegetable that can thrive in a variety of climates and growing conditions. It is a hardy plant that can withstand frost and cold temperatures, making it an ideal crop for regions with shorter growing seasons. Its deep root system allows it to retain moisture well and makes it resistant to drought.

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in celeriac as a garden crop. Its unique taste and properties have made it a favorite among chefs and home cooks alike. Whether you are a seasoned gardener or a beginner, celeriac can be a rewarding and exciting addition to your garden.

Celery Celeriac – Key Growing Information

When it comes to growing celeriac, there are several key pieces of information that every grower should know. Celeriac, also known as celery root, is a variety of celery that is grown specifically for its large, edible root. Here is some key information to help you successfully grow this delicious vegetable.

Planting and Germination: Celeriac is typically grown from seeds, which should be sown indoors in trays or pots in early spring. The seeds are small and should be sown shallowly, about 0.25 inches deep. Keep the soil moist and warm, and the seeds should germinate within 10 to 14 days.

Transplanting: Once the seedlings have developed their first true leaves, they can be transplanted outdoors. Celeriac prefers a sunny or partially shaded location with well-drained soil. Space the plants about 12 to 18 inches apart to allow for proper root development.

Growing Conditions: Celeriac requires a consistent supply of moisture throughout the growing season. Mulching the soil around the plants can help to retain moisture and suppress weed growth. The plants should also be watered regularly, especially during dry periods. Celeriac is a cool-season vegetable and can tolerate frost well, but it should be protected from severe freezes.

Harvesting: Celeriac roots are typically ready for harvest about 100 to 120 days after planting. They can be harvested when the roots are firm and about 3 to 4 inches in diameter. To harvest, carefully dig up the plants and cut away the leaves. Trim the roots and store them in a cool, dark place until you are ready to use them.

Varieties: There are several different varieties of celeriac to choose from. Some popular varieties include ‘Giant Prague’, ‘Brilliant’, ‘Ibis’, and ‘Monarch’. Each variety has its own unique flavor and texture, so it’s best to try a few different ones to see which you prefer.

Uses: Celeriac can be used in a variety of ways in the kitchen. It is commonly used in soups, stews, and casseroles, and can also be roasted, mashed, or grated and used raw in salads. Its mild, celery-like flavor adds a delicious depth to many dishes.

Key Tips: Here are a few key tips for growing celeriac:

  1. Start seeds indoors about 10 to 12 weeks before the last frost date for your area.
  2. Keep the soil consistently moist, but not waterlogged, throughout the growing season.
  3. Avoid planting celeriac in the same spot where you have grown other members of the celery family in the past, as this can increase the risk of disease.
  4. If your celeriac plants flower, they are likely to be the result of stress and may not produce a good quality root.

By following these key pieces of information, you can grow celeriac successfully and enjoy this flavorful vegetable straight from your own garden.

From the Grower’s Library

When it comes to growing celeriac, understanding its origins is the key. Celeriac, also known as celery root, is a close relative of celery. It has been cultivated for its root, which is grown and harvested for its culinary uses. Celeriac is native to the Mediterranean region and was first registered as a distinct variety in North America in the year 1834.

Growing celeriac starts with germination. The seeds are sown either directly in the soil or in seedling trays. It’s important to provide moisture and ensure proper drainage for successful germination. Celeriac plants have a deep root system, so it’s best to start them in plug trays or individual pots to give their roots ample space to grow.

Celeriac can be grown from September until the first frost. The plants prefer cool weather and can tolerate light frost. For best results, plant the seedlings or plugs about 6-8 inches apart and in rows spaced 12-18 inches apart. This allows them to have enough room to develop their roots and grow into healthy plants.

Harvesting celeriac can be done once the roots have reached a desirable size. This usually occurs after 100-120 days from the moment of planting. The roots are dug up carefully using a garden fork or spade, being careful not to damage them. After harvesting, celeriac can be stored for several weeks in a cool, moist place.

Celeriac has a strong celery flavor and is often used in soups, stews, and other cooked dishes. It can also be grated or thinly sliced and enjoyed raw in salads. Celeriac is a versatile vegetable with many health benefits. It is a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, and has properties that can help with digestion and boost the immune system.

From questions about germination to tips on harvesting, the grower’s library is a valuable source of information for celeriac growers. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced grower, the library provides insights into the best techniques and practices for successfully growing this unique and flavor-rich vegetable.


When is the best time to grow celeriac?

What are the key growing properties of celeriac?

What are some of the origins and uses of celeriac?

How should I plant celeriac seeds or seedlings?

What are the best practices for growing celeriac?

What are some common questions from growers about growing celeriac?

What are the similarities and differences between celeriac and celery?

What are the best varieties of celeriac to grow?

What kind of moisture and temperature conditions does celeriac prefer?

How long does it take for celeriac to germinate and grow?

What are some common pests and diseases that celeriac can face?

What are some ways to store celeriac once it has been harvested?

What are some creative uses for celeriac in cooking?

Where can I find more information about growing celeriac?

What are the benefits of growing heirloom celeriac varieties?

Can celeriac be grown in containers or small spaces?

How deep should I plant celeriac roots?

✿ Read More About Vegetables.

Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.