Nasturtium, Empress of India (Tropaeolum nanum), packet of 15 seeds


Family:  Nasturtium (Tropaeolaceae)

Hardy to Zones 10 to 12, otherwise grown as an annual, 70 days to flowers

Native to Peru and introduced into European commerce in antiquity, this particular type is a small-leaved, mounding form of the plant that is very well suited for planting in pots or may be grown in profusion as a comely bedding plant. “Empress of India” is an heirloom cultivar that bears masses of vermillion flowers on plants growing to 14 inches tall.  The leaves are blue-green, characteristically formed.  Traditional usage (TWM): prevention of scurvy, promotes appetite, cleansing of the face. Source of vitamin C.  Plant prefers full sun and dry to mesic soils. Easily grown by direct seeding in the spring or summer garden, the seeds should be planted quite deeply (2 to 4 inches deep) in order to produce a strong root system.  Planting deeply in the early spring helps the plants withstand those last naughty frosts which might otherwise wipe clean the slate that was so handsomely prepared with only the best of seeds, aspirations, and heart sighs. Once up, they may be thinned to 6 inches apart and kept free of weeds until they self mulch.  Water only after the soil surface has dried. An excellent choice for a deckside terra-cotta pot, a sunny path, a steep hillside, or the children’s garden.  The seeds are big, always come up and are very interesting germinators, so the plant tends to kindle the nascent gardener’s sense of accomplishment while promoting a healthy attunement to nature.

15 seeds/pkt., Open Pollinated, Untreated, NO GMO’s



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  1. Question


    Regarding Vit c, would that come from the flower? Face cleanser? Thank you

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    • Richo Cech

      Richo Cech

      Hello Bonnie, Nasturtium is harmless if a bit spicy. The leaves, flower buds and flowers are all used. A face cleanser can be made by pouring boiling water in a bowl, dropping in the flowers, allowing to steep until the water has cooled, then expressing through a cotton cloth and applying to face. This has been done over the centuries as a treatment for oily skin and to invigorate the dermis. Nasturtium and chamomile water as an after-shampoo rinse–you will glow. r

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  2. One person found this helpful
    Richo Cech

    Admin Richo Cech

    Empress of India Nasturtiums (Tropaeolum nanum), an excellent mounding annual that augments medicinal and vegetable gardens with its velvety red flowers and deep blue-green, discoid leaves. Attracts beneficial insects and deters aphids, white fly and rabbits. Peppery taste good in salads, flowers garnish the platter, seeds substitute capers in pickles. This dwarf variety is excellent for pots, or can be planted in the spring garden to fill in spaces between taller medicinal plants, contrasting excellently, for instance, with Elecampane, Wormwood or Motherwort. She is a beauty, hold her close to your heart.

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