Has anyone grown watercress? Does it grow from seed or from a cutting?

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What is the best way to start watercress, from seed or cutting? I know it is to be grown in marshy, wet ground.

-- (godsfarmgirl@yahoo.com), March 17, 2001


Hi, I've grown watercress in my koi pond for about three years now. I grew it from a cutting. It doesn't spread very fast though. It likes rocky, sandy soil and to be grown in just mud or water up to 2" deep. It also requires mid-day shade and it dies back in the summer. It seems to be a cool weather plant. It roots very easily at every node. It also seems to enjoy slowly moving water. Maybe it helps keep it cool. Be sure not to collect any from a stream or ditch that may have chemicals, etc. in. Could make you sick. Hope I helped. Bye for now. Indiana Gardener

-- Indiana Gardener (greenthumbs777@yahoo.com), March 17, 2001.

Here in West-central Tennessee watercrest grows naturally in shallow spring runs. I've heard it can be grown from seed, but do not have a source. It dies back during winter a bit. Some of my cattle love it, others won't touch it. Have been told watercrest is a sign of good, clean water. Banks of the spring run where I get my house water would be considered wet, marshy soil and it won't grow there, just in the running water itself.

-- Ken S. in WC TN (scharabo@aol.com), March 18, 2001.

Is water cress the same things as water chestnuts! If so will they grow in Maine? What do they look like>?

-- michelle (tsjheath@ainop.com), March 19, 2001.

I've seem watercress seeds for sale, though I can't remember where. (Try Shepherd's garden, maybe?)

-- Michael Nuckols (nuckolsm@wildak.net), March 19, 2001.

Water cress and water chestnuts are quite different. Water chestnuts are the corm of a different plant, and they seem to only be produced in fairly warm climates, the biggest producers being places like Thailand, Taiwan, and probably parts of China. I don't think you can grow them in Maine, altho you can always experiment!

-- julie f. (rumplefrogskin@excite.com), March 20, 2001.

Seed for watercress is available from Johnny's Selected Seeds.

It is a green, a bit bitter, makes the world's best tempura. Also used in soups, and in watercress, cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches, a real delicacy.

You might be able to find some in a good grocery store and root it from that. Grows well in maine!

-- seraphima (djones@kodiak.alaska.edu), March 22, 2001.

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