Do you love the fresh, crisp taste of celery? Nothing beats celery slathered with peanut butter, homemade pimento cheese, or a tasty vegetable dip for a healthy snack.

Celery also offers numerous health benefits. It's considered a negative-calorie food because chewing celery burns more calories than it contains. Additionally, it's an anti-inflammatory food that helps fight cancer and chronic diseases.

Ready to learn how to grow this delicious vegetable in your garden? Let’s dive into the details!

Celery Planting Information

Hardiness Zones
Celery grows well in USDA hardiness zones 2 through 10.

Soil Requirements
Celery thrives in loam, clay, and sandy soils that are fertile with a pH between 6.0 and 6.8. Add a thin layer of compost before planting.

Celery needs full sun but can tolerate partial shade.

1. Indoor Seed Starting: Begin seeds indoors 10 to 12 weeks before the last frost.
2. Fall Indoor Seed Starting: For a fall crop, start seeds indoors 20 to 26 weeks before the first frost.
3. Hardening Off: Harden off seedlings at least 7 to 10 days before transplanting.
4. Outdoor Transplanting: Transplant outdoors when the weather is stable after the last frost, and seedlings have 3 to 4 true leaves.

Space plants 6 to 12 inches apart and rows 18 to 40 inches apart.

Sow seeds at a depth of 1/4 to 1/2 inch.

Best Companion Plants
Beans, onions, cabbage, leeks, cauliflower, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, garlic, and lettuce.

Worst Companion Plants
Corn, carrots, Irish potatoes, parsley, and parsnip.

Celery requires plenty of water—at least 1 inch per week.

Apply a balanced fertilizer 2 to 3 weeks before planting and side-dress every 10 to 14 days.

Common Problems
Celery can be susceptible to bacterial blight, soft rot, celery mosaic virus, damping-off, early blight, downy mildew, late blight, Fusarium yellows, powdery mildew, pink rot, armyworms, aphids, and nematodes.

Harvest celery 100 to 130 days after planting, when the stalks are at least 8 inches tall.

Best Celery Varieties

Celery comes in three main types: celeriac (grown for its flavorful roots), leaf celery (grown for its aromatic leaves), and stalk celery (the most common type, grown for its crunchy stalks). This guide focuses on leaf celery and stalk celery varieties. For celeriac, check out our dedicated guide.

Golden Self-Blanching Celery
This heirloom variety doesn’t require hilling to blanch the stalks. It has thick, robust stalks.

Cutting Celery
Grown for its leaves rather than stalks, this type is easy to grow and has flavorful leaves.

Red Celery


A unique variety with red stalks and deep green leaves. This heirloom variety has a distinctive taste.

White Plume Celery
Primarily grown for its leaves, this slender-stalked celery is a smaller variety with crisp stems and fragrant leaves.

Tango Celery
Known for its rich flavor and drought tolerance, this stalk celery variety is a garden favorite.

Conquistador Celery
Produces high-quality celery heads with crisp, rarely hollow stalks. Conquistador adapts well to heat and low moisture conditions.

How to Grow Celery

Sunlight Needs
Plant celery in a sunny spot. It can tolerate some shade, but full sun is ideal for optimal growth. Celery grows well in USDA hardiness zones 2-10.

Soil Requirements
Celery prefers loam, sandy, and clay soils. The soil should be fertile with a pH between 6.0 and 6.8. Add a thin layer of compost before planting or transplanting.

When to Start
1. Indoor Seed Starting: Start seeds indoors 10 to 12 weeks before the last frost date.
2. Fall Planting: Start seeds indoors 20 to 26 weeks before the first frost date for a fall crop.
3. Hardening Off: Harden off seedlings 7 to 10 days before transplanting.
Direct sowing is an option when temperatures are between 55°F and 70°F. Celery wilts in high temperatures and doesn't grow well in cold. In cold regions, grow celery in summer. In warm regions, it's a late fall or winter crop.

Growing Celery from Scraps
Growing celery from scraps is a fun way to recycle kitchen waste. Here's how:

1. Soak the Base:

• Purchase a bunch of celery from your local supermarket or farmers' market.
• Cut off the base of the celery. Clean and store the stalks as usual.
• Save the base to grow your new celery plant. Soak the base in warm water and place it near a window or light source for a week, changing the water every few days.
2. Transplant the Base:

After a week, you should see new growth.
Remove the celery base from the water and plant it in a pot filled with potting soil, covering it completely with soil except for the new shoots.
Water the plant using a spray bottle to keep the soil moist but not soggy.

Growing Celery from Seed
Press the seeds into the soil but do not cover them. Keep seeds moist by watering the soil and misting with a spray bottle. If seeds dry out, they will die.

When planting seedlings, space them 10-12 inches apart. If direct sowing seeds, plant them 1/4 inch deep and thin them out after germination to maintain the correct spacing.

Caring for Celery
Celery can be picky to grow. It dislikes high temperatures and requires consistent moisture. It also has a long growing season and needs frequent feeding.

Mulch helps retain moisture. Apply an inch of mulch around each plant.

Water regularly throughout the growing season. If the stalks are small and dry, they’re not getting enough water.

Tying the Stalks
To prevent the stalks from sprawling on the ground, tie them together with twine as they grow.



Growing celery might be a bit challenging, but with the right care and attention, you can enjoy fresh, crisp celery from your garden. Follow this guide to choose the best varieties, plant and care for your celery, and handle any issues that arise. Happy gardening!

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