This is a blog post on growing and harvesting weld. Weld is also known as Reseda Luteola or dyer’s rocket is an old ancient dye plant that produces a yellow color. Ancient as in early 1st century BC. It can range from dull to yellow-green. It is a biennial plant which means it’s has a two-year life span like woad. Here is a link on how to grow woad. To be honest I discovered a few matured two-year-old plants going into flower in my garden??!! As a result, I was so happy that I found it and not kill it. My husband thought it is dandelion??!! I have been trying to grow this plant since last year by gave up after not seeing any germination. I reuse the compost for other purposes I guess some might just escape and germinate by themselves.
Weld is easily found on footpaths and along railway lines. It is much smaller than the ones planted at home due to it’s growing conditions eg. lack of water. But if you are a dyer like you will want to try to cultivate this plant in your own garden. This is so to obtain the most optimum crops out of it.
Growing and harvesting Weld
To get growing with a weld is to obtain some seeds. It is easily available online. I got mine from Just Seeds and King Seeds. You won’t believe how many packets of seeds I have bought as I thought I will get the grips of growing weld at all. It is possible to collect seeds found on plants on footpaths or on walks in parks. The best way to sow the seeds is to sow outside. These plants have taproots and don’t like to be disturbed or transplanted. Try pulling the roots out of a Weld plant and it will just wilt in no time. It has its own manner of growing and they tend to grow where they like to grow. Don’t be surprised if you find them on vegetable patches or footpaths.
Weld plants need watering during the hot season. In the first year, they grow into rosette-like Woad. Then on the second year come late springtime they will shot up branches and small leaves. Do grow it in sunny spots and drought-free spots. It is also susceptible to black flies and slugs. I spray with some diluted washing up and neem.
It’s the plant tops that yield the dye pot. Cutaway some and leave some for the plant to produce seeds for next time. The whole plant does produce dye but is not as strong as the plant tops. I will do a more in-depth write-up in a later blog post.
Thank you for reading and dropping by.