How to grow watercress – the plant packed full of vitamins – Express


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WATERCRESS is an aquatic flowering plant which is a tasty addition to salads and sandwiches. If you want to grow the versatile plant at home, here’s how. PUBLISHED: 17: 14, Sun, Feb 21, 2021 | UPDATED: 17: 14, Sun, Feb 21, 2021 Love Your Weekend with Alan Titchmarsh: Couple transform garden Make the most of your money by signing up to our newsletter for FREE now Invalid emailWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters.
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You can unsubscribe at any time.Watercress is a quick-growing, perennial – long-lasting – plant which is native to Europe and Asia. Many people use it in salads, soups and in sandwiches due to its far-ranging health benefits. Watercress is relatively easy to grow, and despite being aquatic does not need a vast expanse of water to thrive.Watercress is regarded as somewhat of a superfood, packed with nutrients such as Vitamin K and Vitamin C.Watercress also contains high levels of iron, which is unusual in vegetables.Iron is necessary to convert energy in our food to be active and essential for growth and development.As well as this watercress can help skin health due to Isothiocyanate (ITC), and lower blood pressure as it also contains nutrients.Read More: How to prepare your garden for spring – 8 essential tips How to grow watercress – the plant packed full of vitamins (Image: The Watercress Company)So how do you grow watercress?Watercress is the perfect plant for gardeners with not much space, as it can grow in containers and does not need direct sunlight.All you need is a large pot and a shaded area to have an ideal growing location for watercress.Growing watercress in containers is actually a safer option than growing it in water, as you can keep the water fresh and free of any pollutants or bacteria. How to grow watercress: Many people use watercress in salads, smoothies and in sandwiches (Image: GETTY)When growing watercress outdoors, you should plant it during March or April, so long as the average temperature is around 8C to 15C.You will needWatercress seedsLarge plastic plant pot (25L)Plant saucerFirst, plant the pot with compost and press down firmly until its almost full. You can fill it to the lip of the plant pot. How to grow watercress: Watercress is regarded as somewhat of a superfood, packed with nutrients such as Vitamin K and Vitamin C (Image: The Watercress Company)Next, sprinkle the watercress seed across the surface of the compost – don’t be afraid to cover the pot.You can cover it up with compost if you wish, however, recommends using vermiculite.Vermiculite is a lightweight hydrous phyllosilicate mineral and will not squash growing seeds or dry them out.Once you have covered over the seeds, place the pot into the plant saucer.DON’T MISSBirds in my garden are costing me a fortune, says JOHN INGHAM [COMMENT]Carol Klein shares advice on growing potatoes [INSIGHT]Carol Klein: How she transformed a field at her Glebe Cottage home [ANALYSIS]As the name might suggest, watercress needs to be kept moist all year round.So, you need to permanently keep water in the plant saucer.Fill up the saucer with water and allow all the soil to become wet, filling the saucer up when it is low on water.If you notice the water becomes discoloured it can be changed weekly. How to grow watercress: As the name might suggest, watercress needs to be kept moist all year round (Image: The Watercress Company)Try not to water over the top of the soil, as this can disrupt the seed.Watercress does not need to be fed, however, you must make sure it stays damp.From four to seven weeks after you have sown the seed you will be able to harvest.You can cut watercress and it will resprout, just make sure you start to trim when the stems are large enough to handle – recommends this is when the stems are about four or five inches in length.You should make sure you leave a few leaves at the base.The Watercress Company is the UK’s largest grower of watercress with beds in Hampshire and Dorset.At the start of the season, the Annual Watercress Festival is held in Alresford, Hampshire which is otherwise known as ‘The Capital of Watercress’.Unfortunately, due to coronavirus restrictions, the festival has been cancelled this year, however, virtual celebrations will take place in May.
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