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Do Mandrakes really exist and if they do, the best way to grow them in the UK?

Hi there,

I am wondering if mandrakes actually exist outside of Harry Potter! - and if they do, can they be grown in the UK. If so, are they a garden plant or can they be a house plant?



  • LynLyn Posts: 23,052
    Yes you can grow them,  good article from the RHS on how to do it.
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,426
    Try Nickys nursery or plant world for seeds

  • Ante1Ante1 Posts: 2,961
    Mandrakes are real plants, and they grow wild here in Croatia. They are strictly protected because they are now endangered plants. Be careful if you get one because whole plant is very poisonous.  
  • Bee witchedBee witched Posts: 1,264
    Many thanks for this thread and the information on seeds.

    I know someone who is a big Potter fan and also loves growing things.
    So I'll buy them some seeds as a wee extra C*****mas gift.

    Bee x
    Gardener and beekeeper in beautiful Scottish Borders  

    A single bee creates just one twelfth of a teaspoon of honey in her lifetime
  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,350
    one of mine, they're very easy from fresh seed

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 10,161
    If you're just after a fun looking house plant then there are a few caudex forming plants that make good substitutes. Have a look at adenium obesum or Fockea edulis for a start. The adenium is normally available as a mature plant with good shape.
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,426
    You wouldn't want to mix that up with swiss chard would you?
  • WoodgreenWoodgreen Posts: 1,273
    Wasn't it said that they scream as you pull them up?
    Anyone tried it? Just wondered if the roots squeak or anything, to give rise to the belief?
  • borgadrborgadr Posts: 703
    At first I thought this was a wind-up post (sorry @luckiestar86 !). You really do learn something new every day on here!
  • PosyPosy Posts: 3,601
    Yes, the history of mandrake goes back a lot further than Harry Potter. However, disappointingly for the lovers of the macabre, they do not much resemble the human body and never scream when pulled from the ground.
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