HOW TO GROW SALAD BURNET
SALAD BURNET grows best in a cool temperate climate. In temperatures above 25°C, the leaves tend to become bitter.
It prefers a sunny situation, needing a good six hours to do well, although a little shade is beneficial during hot summers. An alkaline or neutral soil of ph 6.5-8.0 is said to give it a sweeter flavour.
A well-drained, moistureretentive soil is ideal, and it needs regular moisture – but not excess – to produce its best growth. It prefers not to dry out too much in summer or get too wet in winter, although once established it will tolerate short periods of drought.
It is easiest to grow salad burnet by seed as its extensive root system makes it hard to divide easily. The seed is fine and needs light to germinate so should be just covered (5mm deep). It will start emerging within 7-10 days.
Sow fresh seed in autumn or spring. If direct sown, plants should be thinned to 10cm and then about 30cm apart. If sowing into containers, modules are preferable as the plants can be checked in growth on transplanting.
Plants will form a tight rosette until they flower, then flowering stems will shoot up to reach 30-45cm. These should be cut as they appear, unless seedlings are wanted, to keep leaf growth tender. If left, the leaves will become tough and bitter.
Once established, plants will self-sow readily. This can be a good way to replace old stock, provided any excess seedlings are culled out promptly or they will soon over-run the garden.
Salad burnet will thrive in your garden in reasonable conditions. It is untroubled by pests and the only thing likely to kill it is root rot in heavy, wet soils.