The Q&A Archives: Watercress

Question: My brother lives on a farm in Indonesia. He is interested in growing watercress for a crop. He has large ponds with clear running water. First, do you have watercress seeds? Secondly, how do you start the seeds. He thinks this would be a very good crop because it is full of vitamins and minerals and has a tangy favor, good for salads. Watercress grows very well in Laos and is used for salads and soups.

Answer: You can plant seed in flats or pots and transplant the seedlings to moist banks, where they will grow rapidly. Or, you can insert cuttings of watercress from the market into wet soil in or near the stream; these will root readily. Be sure the stream is free from pollution before planting. Plants can also be grown in pots of soil and placed in a tub of water. The water should be changed weekly. Watercress will grow to 10-15 inches, with small, roundish leaflets. Seed can be obtained from Shepherd's Garden Seeds, 30 Irene St., Torrington, CT 06790-6658. Phone (860) 482-3638.

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