Chicory

I love the color of blue in the garden and chicory plants are the answers to that! A couple of years ago when I was trying to fill my barren garden, I wanted to arrange the garden by color. All the flowers I grew in each of those areas have the same color either in pinks, yellows, oranges, purples, or blues. It seemed hard at the time to find nice plants in blue colors that would thrive in our hotter zone 10, Southern California. Most of the blue flowering plants only do well in the cooler climates.

Love the delicate blue filaments and stamens inside the flower
The blue color fades the longer it is exposed to light during the day.

When I was looking for seeds to grow, I found out that chicory served many purposes. Most people know that chicory roots can be used to make chicory coffee but may not know that the leaves and flowers are also edible. Chicory also has many health benefits such as aids in digestion, improves heart health, relieves anxiety, reduces arthritis, and treats constipation. I didn’t really care about all of that at the time of planting seeds but I was glad that I was growing something that does more than look beautiful!

Here are my simple tips to grow chicory: full sun is best, can tolerate part sun too but not much flowering; no fertilizer or special care; staking may be necessary since they can get up to 3-4 feet tall; leave about 2 feet wide room to grow; can grow in dry tough soil. They do tend to look like a garden weed when they are little though, so be careful when you weed.

These were grown in a larger pot and it is leaning and out of control.