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This ancient family includes popular "continental" greens, most preferring cool weather and evenly moist soil. You can sow them in the spring as soon as the soil can be worked, when the soil is about 45°F degrees. However, late summer sowing for fall and winter harvest may be more successful. Wild at heart, most Chicories prefer to be direct-sown in moderately fertile soil; too much added fertilizer, especially nitrogen, can cause them to bolt. With all varieties, keep soil lightly moist until seedlings emerge. Chicories have varying degrees of bitter flavor and their dense texture adds desirable dimension to salads. Deer resistant.

Average seed life: 2 years.

Varigata Castelfranco Radicchio

Varigata Castelfranco Radicchio Varigata Castelfranco Radicchio Varigata Castelfranco Radicchio Varigata Castelfranco Radicchio
80-90 days. One of the most versatile varieties for delectable consumption tossed raw into salads, sautéed or braised with meats or poultry or incorporated into bubbling soups, risotto and pasta, Castelfranco is a must-grow in early spring and fall gardens. A Lettuce look-alike, this rare heirloom thrives in cooler weather when its milder, somewhat sweet flavor with just a hint of tang is at its best. Imported directly from our Italian seed growers, it has upright, rosette-shaped pale grass-green heads with deep wine-red splotches and speckles. (OP.)

One packet of about 500 seeds
Catalog #2987
  • Buy 10 for $3.40 each and save 10%
  • Buy 50 for $2.80 each and save 26%

Availability: In stock


Gardening Tips

Direct-Sow Basics

Radicchio Sowing Instructions
Planting Depth
Row Spacing:12”-18”
Plant Spacing:10”-12”
Days to Germination:5-12 days
Germination Temperature:45°-60°F

Radicchio is easily grown in cool weather. Sow directly in the garden as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring. But Radicchio can also be started as transplants 5 to 8 weeks before setting out. Sow thinly using sterilized seed starter mix, cover lightly and water. Provide light, moderate warmth and good ventilation. Radicchio can be grown in the “cut and come again” method, broadcast seed and water lightly. When the leaves are 3" to 6" tall, harvest with scissors. A second crop may be sown in late summer to early fall. Grow Radicchio quickly with plenty of moisture for the most pleasing taste. They will bolt (go to seed) and taste a bit unpleasant in hot weather. Radicchio dislikes added nitrogen as it causes bolting. Amend the soil with moderate amounts of compost and a sprinkling of organic fertilizer.

Shade Tolerance

Deer Resistant Seed Varieties