Good King Henry, Goosefoot, English Mercury, Poor-man's Asparagus
Chenopodium bonus-henricus

Family: Amaranthaceae
Genus: Chenopodium (ken-oh-POH-dee-um) (Info)
Species: bonus-henricus (BOW-nus HEN-ree-kus) (Info)

Category:

Herbs

Perennials

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us

Height:

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

Spacing:

9-12 in. (22-30 cm)

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Danger:

N/A

Bloom Color:

Green

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Late Spring/Early Summer

Foliage:

Grown for foliage

Herbaceous

Velvet/Fuzzy-Textured

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Non-patented

Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Regional

This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Lemoore, California

Falmouth, Maine

Grove City, Ohio

Hood River, Oregon

Gardeners' Notes:

1
positive
2
neutrals
0
negatives
RatingContent
Positive

On Apr 30, 2004, GILHOULEYHORSE from Hood River, OR (Zone 6a) wrote:

It was hard to start, but after it got going, is real hardy. It's good for chickens, also called "fat hen". It's one of the first things ready to eat in the early spring, before anything else.

Neutral

On Sep 7, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

The dried flower spikes/seedheads are attractive if left on the plant through the summer, although they do not make good everlasting arrangements.

Ants are often observed harvesting the seeds, which can help explain its sudden appearance in distant sites.

Neutral

On Oct 27, 2001, Baa wrote:

An erect, succulent perennial from Europe.

Has triangular/arrow shaped, mid to dark green leaves which are mealy when young and felted beneath. Bears long spikes of very small, greenish flowers.

Flowers May-August.

Adores nirtogen rich soil and often appears on livestock farms unannounced. Likes a deep, rich,well drained soil in full sun but will take some light shade. Once you have this chap he will appear all over the place but is easy to pull up.

This really ought to go into the Vegetable section as it is a great source of iron, vitamins and minerals. It has less of an after taste than Spinach and is just as good for you, in fact it tastes rather insipid so may go unnoticed in childrens meals. It is used raw or cooked in al... read more