Mandrake Seeds Germinated?
Answered by: Conrad Richter
Question from: Anne Van Arsdall
Posted on: August 16, 1998

In the spring, I ordered a packet of mandrake seeds from you, and tried several ways to germinate them, I thought to no avail. Then I more or less forgot about them, and now I think I may have some growing, but have not been able to find anything but ancient descriptions. Can you help? The leaves are hairy at the base, and all the fleshy leaves are groing out of a stem or root under the ground (in other words, there is no big stem growing up with branches and leaves off of it, the leaves grow from one central place). They have a pungent odor (mentioned in Culpepper as foetid!) The shape of the leaves looks like the drawing in Culpepper. I can take a photo and send it if it would help. If it flowers, what would the mandrake flowers look like? Any help would be appreicated; I have wanted a long time to grow a mandrake plant!

It certainly sounds like you have the right plant. Mandrake does not have a central stem. Our seeds have been germinating quite reliably the past few years, and we now have many reports of success. Welcome to the club!

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