Source for a colorfast blue dye that has been used since ancient times.
Woad is now in the spotlight as an herbal antiviral of great promise.
It has been used for infections and diseases in China for millennia.
Easy to grow in regular garden soil. Related to cabbage, mustard, and kale, and the like them, prefers soil on the alkaline side and plenty of compost. Both root and dried leaves are used medicinally. See the book, Herbal Antivirals on page 72 for full details of preparation and use. Dye is made from fresh leaves. The Chinese variety we carry is not listed as an invasive like the European variety, but does make sheaves of yellow flowers followed by seedpods if not harvested. Has been successfully grown in gardens pretty much everywhere.
BOTANICAL NAME: Isatis indigotica
Seeds can be sown in spring or in fall in containers in a cold frame. Prefers good loan soil and full sun; winter hardy. It can grown up to 2' tall and wide. Plants can also be divided in the spring. You can begin harvesting when the leaves are fully grown and picked when flowering. It's possible to harvest 3 or more times in well-worked soil.
GROW BIOINTENSIVE® CULTURAL INFORMATION:
Annual/Zones 3-9/Height 3-5'/Spacing 12-24"
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION :Bee Friendly
PHOTO CREDIT: Growing Color Blog-growingcolour.blogspot.com