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Ashwagandha

Culinary & Medicinal Herb Seeds

We carry a diverse variety of herb seeds, including culinary herbs, medicinals, ethnobotanicals, native plants of the PNW, and nectar and pollen rich flowers attractive to bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects. All varieties are open pollinated, we do not sell hybrid seeds. Average seed life is 3 years. Please allow 1-2 weeks for shipping.

Ashwagandha

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Ashwagandha

3.75

(Withania somnifera)
 

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Common Names
Ashwagandha, Indian Ginseng, Poison Gooseberry, Winter Cherry

Botanical Name
Withania somnifera

Plant Family
Solanaceae (Nightshade Family)

Native Range
India, Africa, Asia

Life Cycle
Perennial/Annual

Hardiness Zone
9-11, Grown as an annual in zones 4-8

Habit
Ashwagandha is an evergreen woody perennial shrub to 6ft tall in its native habitat of the hot and dry topics. Here it grows to about 3 feet tall and 2 feet wide in one season. It produces small light green flowers which then form attractive reddish-orange berries concealed inside transparent paper coverings, similar to how a tomatillo grows. In fact Ashwagandha and Tomatillos are very closely related, and were once placed in the genus Physalis.

Sun/Soil
Ashwagandha plants prefer full sun and average soil with good drainage. 

Germination/Sowing
Seeds germinate very easily once the soil temp reaches an average of 21C. If grown as an annual, Ashwagandha is best started early in the spring to provide an extended growing season. This can be done anytime in April or May, with sizeable roots forming by October. Once all danger of frost has passed and the soil has warmed Ashwagandha seedlings can be transplanted outdoors ~ we usually time this with the planting of other hot crops such as tomatoes and basil.

Growing/Care
The plants thrive in arid conditions and are happy in the heat. We like to grow our Ashwagandha plants in the greenhouse but this is not necessary so long as you provide a sheltered, well-drained spot with full sun. In zones 7 and cooler Ashwagandha is grown as an annual. At our farm (zone 9) we are able to grow Ashwagandha as a herbaceous perennial. Its leaves and woody stems are killed off by frost but, as long as the soil is not overly wet, its roots remain vital through the winter and will sprout new shoots in the spring.

Harvesting
In the fall of the first or second year the roots may be harvested and can be used fresh or dried for tinctures or teas. 

Culinary Uses
The dried roots are traditionally dried, powdered and added to food.

Medicinal Uses
Ashwagandha has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine for many thousands of years. Sometimes known as ‘Indian Ginseng’ the roots of Ashwagandha are used in herbal medicine to increase vitality in the body, reduce stress and improve quality of sleep.

Themes
Drought Tolerant, Low Maintenance, Apothecary Garden, Deer Resistant.