Lovage

Lovage

SKU: HR1101
Sow some Lovage seeds for the tallest of the garden herbs. Lovage makes a striking accent in any garden, especially when it flowers. It is an umbelliferous plant in the family Apiaceae, which makes it a cousin of the carrot. Read More

Exposure Full-sun to partial shade

Season Warm season

Shipping & Returns

West Coast Seeds ships anywhere in North America. However, we are not able to ship garlic, potatoes, asparagus crowns, bulbs, onion sets, Mason bee cocoons, or nematodes outside of Canada. We regret, we cannot accept returns or damages for orders outside of Canada. The minimum shipping charge to the US is $6.99.

More details about Lovage

Levisticum officinale. Sow some Lovage seeds for the tallest of the garden herbs. Lovage makes a striking accent in any garden, especially when it flowers. It is an umbelliferous plant in the family Apiaceae, which makes it a cousin of the carrot. But this herb is a massive perennial plant that grows 1.8–2.5m (6–8') in a single season. Use the leaves in salads or to make soup or season broths. The flavour is distinctly celery-like. Even the root can be eaten as a vegetable or grated into salads. Give it a corner in your vegetable or herb garden, but one or two plants will be ample. We recommend allowing the plants to bloom, as their flower heads are attractive to a wide range of predatory and beneficial insects. The flowers are followed by seeds that can be harvested and used as a spice, with a flavour similar to fennel seeds.

Lovage is deer resistant, and an important companion plant for the vegetable garden.

Quick Facts:

    • Tastes like celery
    • Perennial and large
    • All parts of the plant are useful
    • Deer resistant
    • Striking accent in garden

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All About Lovage

Latin

Latin
Levisticum officinale
Family: Apiaceae

Difficulty

Difficulty
Easy

Season & Zone

Season & Zone
Season: Warm season
Exposure: Full sun or partial shade
Zone: Hardy to Zone 4

Timing

Timing
Start indoors in spring or direct sow in the fall. If starting indoors, try to maintain a soil temperature of 15°C (60°F). Once seedlings are big enough to handle, harden them off before transplanting to the garden.

Starting

Starting
Sow seeds 5mm (¼”) deep, three or four seeds per pot, and thin to the strongest seedling. Germination takes 10-14 days. Keep soil moist until they are established, and transplant out at least 60cm (24″) apart.

Growing

Growing
Choose the site for your lovage with care, as they are long lived perennials, and they grow tall. They will tolerate partial shade to full sun. Lovage develops a long taproot, so cultivate the bed deeply, and add well rotted manure. Consider grouping lovage together with other perennial food plants like asparagus and rhubarb in a permanent bed. Allow for a spread of at least 1m (3′).

Harvest

Harvest
The leaves of lovage can part a wonderful meaty flavour to vegetable soups, stews and stocks. After the herb has flowered, the leaves develop a bitter taste, so it is best harvested in early summer. The fresh leaves can be frozen in ice cubes for winter use. Chop the leaves finely and distribute them in ice cube trays, then cover with water. When the cubes are frozen, put them in zip-top bags.

The sap of lovage can cause skin irritation, so wear long sleeves and gloves when cutting the plant back in autumn.

How to Grow Lovage

Step 1: Timing

Start indoors in spring or direct sow in the fall. If starting indoors, try to maintain a soil temperature of 15°C (60°F). Once seedlings are big enough to handle, harden them off before transplanting to the garden.

Step 2: Starting

Sow seeds 5mm (¼”) deep, three or four seeds per pot, and thin to the strongest seedling. Germination takes 10-14 days. Keep soil moist until they are established, and transplant out at least 60cm (24″) apart.

Step 3: Growing

Choose the site for your lovage with care, as they are long lived perennials, and they grow tall. They will tolerate partial shade to full sun. Lovage develops a long taproot, so cultivate the bed deeply, and add well rotted manure. Consider grouping lovage together with other perennial food plants like asparagus and rhubarb in a permanent bed. Allow for a spread of at least 1m (3′).

Step 4: Harvest

The leaves of lovage can part a wonderful meaty flavour to vegetable soups, stews and stocks. After the herb has flowered, the leaves develop a bitter taste, so it is best harvested in early summer. The fresh leaves can be frozen in ice cubes for winter use. Chop the leaves finely and distribute them in ice cube trays, then cover with water. When the cubes are frozen, put them in zip-top bags.

Tip!

The sap of lovage can cause skin irritation, so wear long sleeves and gloves when cutting the plant back in autumn.

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