Mandragora officinarum
"Mandrake"

This reputedly magical plant has a taproot up to 4’ long that supposedly resembles a very ugly baby able to kill you with its scream if you dug it up! Rarely available it’s perfect for the adventurous gardener. Grown from Cretan seeds, our plants have purplish tobacco-like leaves in a 1-2’ wide and 2-6” tall rosette. In the Spring a cluster of 1-2” purplish flowers emerge in the center followed by “Satan’s Apples” - small apple-scented yellow berries. Goes dormant in the late Summer or when stressed, but returns from the root. Plant in part shade in rich, well-drained soil, taking care to not disturb the taproot. Deep pots are OK, but it is unlikely to bloom and set fruit. It is part of mandrake’s fame that the roots contain dangerous nightshade alkaloids so do not plant it where it can be mistaken for an edible.

Anni J

Part Shade
Avg./Low water

Perennial
USDA zones 6-9