Also known as opposite leaved saltwort, opposite leaf Russian thistle, agretti, or lischi. Originally cultivated primarily for soda ash production, Salsola soda is native to coastal regions in the Mediterranean, and can tolerate (even be irrigated) with salt water. It is commonly cultivated using sea water, but can be irrigated with fresh water as well and is being studied for its possible uses in bio-remediation applications for its ability to remove salt from contaminated soils.
Though no longer grown for soda ash, the long, thin, slightly salty and crunchy greens are widely consumed in it's native region where it's often refereed to as agretti or barba di frate (meaning friar's beard) and is becoming a popular gourmet green in many other areas of the world. It retains an excellent crunch when lightly cooked, but can also be eaten raw and is commonly served with seafood dishes.
Though the two are distinctively different, Salosola soda is sometimes mistaken for Salsola komarovi (land Seaweed or Oka Hijiki) which has a similar appearance, texture, and taste. Salsola soda seeds have an irregular and naturally low germination rate which averages between 30%-40%.
|Habit/Size||18 inches wide and 24 inches tall when mature.|
|Germination||Direct sow 3/8-1/2 inches deep after risk of frost has passed. Space plants 8-12 inches apart. Salsola soda seeds have an irregular and naturally low germination rate, but typically germinate in 10-20 days depending on soil temp.|
|Harvest||Harvest the green tops which will continue to grow back throughout its growing season.|
|Breed Status||open pollinated|
|Days to Maturity||48-52 days|
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