Woad is an attractive plant with blue-green leaves and yellow flowers in May. Though a biennial, in mild winter areas it may grow as a short-lived perennial, and may also self-sow. Woad leave produce a natural blue dye that has been used for over 2000 years. It was used in ancient Briton by the Celts to make an arresting blue warpaint. (Isatis tinctoria)
Medicinal: In 2006, woad was discovered to have anti-tumor properties. A study at the University of Bologna in Italy showed that it contains 20 times more glucobrassicin than broccoli, and its activity may be enhanced approximately 65 times. Though woad is not an edible plant, it may be used as a source of glucobrassicin (and its derivatives) for treatment of breast cancer. It acts by flushing out cancer-causing chemicals linked to estrogen. Glucobrassicin also acts in a defensive capacity against insect pests. Its levels increase by 30 percent when leaf damage occurs.
Growing instructions: Biennial in zones 5-9. Germination at 60°F in 10 days. Direct sow. Full sun. Grows 24-48" tall. Space 9-12" apart.
Cannot ship to ID, MT, OR, UT, or WY.
Packet: 0.25 g - approximately 49 seeds