A reputable source for French tarragon plants?

MizLizzie

I want to try again to grow tarragon because I use so much of it in cooking. But I’ve always heard the real deal has to be started from root. All the garden shops have is faux tarragon, either Mexican (lame) or Russian (useless). Years ago I ordered a start online but the house sitter forgot to water it, and it croaked. If anyone has a mail-order source for FRENCH tarragon, I would be so grateful. I don’t want to pay $30 to ship a sprig of Mexican tarragon. Many thanks, and stay safe.

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ediej1209 AL Zn 7

I hope someone has an answer, because I am in the same boat!

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plllog

I can't answer your question. I'm not a great gardener. I just have questions.

My tarragon came from a nursery, in the herb department, as a small plant which went right in the ground. Maybe a foot tall, IIRC. It grows very well in Southern California (no temperatures below 45° F). In fact, it has to be cut back regularly. It tries to run, but isn't actually invasive.

It also has good flavor, IMO. I wouldn't call it "lame", but I don't know if it's the Mexican, or French. I've never heard of faux, Mexican or Russian before. I can't figure out from the descriptions what I have. Do you known how to tell?

I was looking up on Google and I accidentally found this place. They're more B2B, though and I think the minimum is 35. https://ncfarmsinc.com/rooted-plugs/Herb-French-Tarragon They might sell you a single one anyway, to be nice. The shipping price is the issue. If it can go Priority Mail, it should be under $20, and if it can fit in the little video tape sized box, it should be well under $10.

There's also this place, which I also know nothing about, but looks promising: https://thegrowers-exchange.com/collections/culinary-herb-plants/products/her-tg01

Check that any place is still operating. Many haven't changed their websites.

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Islay Corbel

If all else fails, when all this is over, I'll send you some seeds! They had some in the supermarket this week.

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laceyvail 6A, WV

True tarragon never sets seeds. It is always propagated by cuttings. Look for a good herb nursery and check them out on garden watchdog.

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sleevendog (5a NY 6aNYC NL CA)

Both on-line places I've used are out-of-stock. Another one was I think 8$ and free shipping but not personally familiar with them.

We have had a mild winter so mine will likely return like my rosemary. Most years I just pick up a tarragon and a rosemary plant from a local nursery.

Yes, true tarragon has so few flowers so very few seed. Very low germination but mostly sterile seed.

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MizLizzie

Wow, a gardening friend clued me in — Monticello has it in their heirloom plans and seeds dept. They propagate it in the house gardens. $10 per start. No, you cannot grow true French tarragon from seeds, only root cuttings. They also have some awesome old tomato seeds. They are very near me, so yay. Off to order.

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MizLizzie

Wow. Grower’s Exchange looks promising, too . . . And also near me. I think I will try them.

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plllog

MizLizzie, great that you've found a couple of options near you!

Thanks to Sleevendog for the no flowers explanation. I've never seen a flower on my tarragon, and the pictures of Mexican and Russian show flowers. :) I guess I have French. :)

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