How To Grow Valerian From Seed To Harvest

Written by: Lars Nyman

Growing Valerian

Growing Valerian

Growing Valerian is an easy and rewarding experience. Not only is it an attractive flowering plant with pinkish-white flowers, but it also has an interesting spicy and bitter taste. Valerian has been used medicinally for its sedative and calming effects, though today it has fallen out of favor with Western medicine. Nonetheless, due to its attractive flower and flavor, growing Valerian is fun and rewarding, providing a pleasant and calming addition to your garden.

Cheatsheet: Growing Valerian from Seed to Harvest


🌱 Plant valerian seeds in well-draining soil

🌞 Choose a sunny location for optimal growth

💦 Keep the soil evenly moist, but not waterlogged


🌿 Valerian grows up to 5 feet tall

⌛️ Takes 2-3 years to reach maturity

🌼 Beautiful pink or white flowers in summer


✂️ Harvest roots in the plant's second or third year

🌿 Leaves and stems can be harvested throughout the growing season

Health Benefits

💤 Valerian root promotes better sleep

🧠 May help reduce anxiety and stress

🩸 Has potential anti-inflammatory properties


🌱 Growing valerian allows you to produce your own herbal remedies

🏡 Create a self-sustaining garden with diverse medicinal plants

🌿 Cultivating valerian ensures a fresh supply whenever needed

Valerian is a beautiful, medicinal herb that I absolutely love growing in my garden. It's not only a joy to look at, but it also has a wide range of beneficial properties for both mind and body. If you're interested in learning how to grow valerian from seed to harvest, you've come to the right place. I'm about to share with you my tried-and-true methods that have helped me cultivate this incredible herb successfully.

1. Choosing the Right Location

Valerian thrives in full sun to partial shade, and it prefers moist, well-drained soil. Before planting, make sure the location you choose offers these ideal conditions for its growth. Take note that valerian can spread quite aggressively, so it's best to give it plenty of room to expand.

2. Starting From Seeds

To get started, sow the valerian seeds directly into the garden bed after the danger of frost has passed. Sow the seeds about a quarter of an inch deep, and space them around 18 inches apart. Keep the soil consistently moist during germination, which usually takes around two to three weeks.

3. Caring for Valerian

Once your valerian plants have sprouted, it's important to keep them moist throughout the growing season. Regular watering is essential, especially in hotter months. As the plants grow taller, providing some support, such as stakes or a trellis, can help prevent them from falling over.

4. Harvesting Valerian

Valeriana officinalis, the most common type of valerian grown in gardens, can be harvested after two to three years of growth. The best time to harvest is in the fall, when the roots are at their most potent. To harvest, gently dig up the roots, wash them thoroughly, and allow them to dry completely before storing in an airtight container.

A fascinating statistic to consider: valerian has been used for centuries as a natural remedy for insomnia, anxiety, and stress, with records dating back to ancient Greece and Rome.

In conclusion, growing valerian is a rewarding experience for any gardener. From choosing the right location to harvesting the roots, the journey from seed to harvest requires patience and care. But the beauty and benefits of this herb make it all worth it. So, give valerian a try in your garden and enjoy the tranquility it brings to your outdoor space.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long does it take for valerian seeds to germinate?

The germination process usually takes 10 to 20 days after sowing the seeds.

2. What is the best time to sow valerian seeds?

The ideal time to sow valerian seeds is in early spring or late fall.

3. How often should I water valerian plants?

Water regularly to keep the soil evenly moist, but avoid waterlogging.

4. Can I grow valerian in containers?

Absolutely! Valerian can thrive in containers as long as they provide sufficient space for root growth.

5. What type of soil does valerian prefer?

Valerian prefers a well-draining soil with moderate fertility.

6. How tall does valerian grow?

Valerian plants can reach a height of 3 to 5 feet.

7. When is the best time to harvest valerian?

Harvest the roots in fall when the foliage begins to die back.

8. How do I prepare valerian roots for storage?

Clean the roots thoroughly, remove any excess soil, and cut them into small pieces for drying or storing.

9. How long does it take for valerian roots to dry?

It takes approximately two to three weeks for valerian roots to dry completely.

10. What are the potential uses of valerian?

Valerian is commonly used for its calming properties and as a natural remedy for insomnia and anxiety.

Growing the plant Valerian is a great way to create a peaceful and relaxing environment in your home or garden. Valerian is known to help alleviate stress, improve the quality of sleep, and can even be used as a calming remedy in times of anxiety. Additionally, Valerian is an attractive plant, so it is a great choice for both its beauty and medicinal benefits. Taking the time to care for Valerian can be an exciting and calming experience!

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