Herb latin name: Smyrnium perfoliatum

Family: Umbelliferae

Edible parts of Smyrnium perfoliatum:

Leaves and young shoots - raw in salads or cooked in soups, stews etc. The plant commences growth in the autumn and the leaves are often available throughout the winter. They have a rather strong celery-like flavour and are often blanched (by excluding light from the growing plant) before use. Leafy seedlings can be used as a parsley substitute. Stem - raw or cooked. Tasting somewhat like celery, it is often blanched (by excluding light) before use. This species is considered to be superior to the related S. olusatrum because it not only blanches better but is also more crisp and tender and not so harsh flavoured. Flower buds - raw. A celery-like flavour, they can be added to salads. The spicy seeds are used as a pepper substitute. Root - cooked. Boiled and used in soups. the root is said to be more tender if it has been kept in a cool place all winter.

Description of the plant:


150 cm
(5 feet)

June to

Habitat of the herb:

Mixed oak woods.

Propagation of Smyrnium perfoliatum:

Seed - best sown in an outdoor seedbed in autumn and planted into its permanent position in late spring. Germination can be slow. Can also be sown in situ in spring.

Cultivation of the herb:

Mixed oak woods.

Medicinal use of Smyrnium perfoliatum:

None known

Known hazards of Smyrnium perfoliatum:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.