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Northeast Regional Reports

Regional Reports: The Best Perennials to Start from Seed – Northeast

Perennials to start from seed

Fine Gardening – Issue 155

1. Lovage

Name: Levisticum officinale

USDA Hardiness Zones: 4 to 8

Size: 3 to 6 feet tall and 2 to 3 feet wide

Conditions: Full sun to partial shade; average soil

Here’s a multipurpose perennial with stature. Lovage is a member of the carrot family, and its tripinnate leaves, large chartreuse flower umbels, and all other parts of the plant are edible. I grind the leaves into a slurry and use them in fall soups. The stems can be candied as a sweet treat with out-of-this-world flavor, and the seeds can be used as a topping for breads or savory muffins. Stratify seeds by chilling them during winter and expect spring seedlings with no fuss.

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