Fenugreek

(Trigonella foenum-graecum) Fenugreek is an annual member of the legume family. The seeds and leaves of fenugreek are a popular ingredient in Indian food. It is grown as an annual in most zones but is perennial in USDA zones 9 to 11. It is an excellent Indian leafy green for beginner gardeners. This green loves heat, grows quickly and is ready to eat in just 20-30 days from sowing! Growing for seeds will take about 55-65 days. Plants have the ability to fix nitrogen and improve the soil, making them a useful and very quick growing cover crop. Fenugreek is native to the Middle East and is frost sensitive. It prefers full sun with some light afternoon shade and requires well-drained soil. Start seeds indoors 3 to 4 weeks before last frost and transplant out after frost has passed. Direct sow is much better for growth. Broadcast seeds into the garden after the soil has warmed consistently to 60 degrees or above. Seeds can be covered up to 1/2 deep, so scratch the seeds in or cover them with soil after broadcasting. Seeds should germinate in 5-10 days. Keep plants regularly watered. For optimal nitrogen fixation be sure to turn the plants under after they have formed pods, but before seed has hardened and matured.

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