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Post  SQWIB on 1/3/2018, 10:21 am

I know this thread is for seeds but couldn't find a thread for cuttings

Does anyone have any Comfrey Cuttings they are willing to trade for some seeds?
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Post  littlejo on 1/3/2018, 2:56 pm

I would be happy to send some comfrey (roots of this are best to send) but, I will have to wait til it quits snowing! Yes, its snowing in the Charleston area.
My comfrey was still green and growing yesterday. It does well in frost. I cut leaves and put around plants that may need a little boost, and it makes a very good compost ingredient.
It's supposed to be in the 60's next week, so maybe then.
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Post  SQWIB on 1/3/2018, 3:42 pm

@littlejo wrote:I would be happy to send some comfrey (roots of this are best to send) but, I will have to wait til it quits snowing! Yes, its snowing in the Charleston area.
My comfrey was still green and growing yesterday. It does well in frost. I cut leaves and put around plants that may need a little boost, and it makes a very good compost ingredient.
It's supposed to be in the 60's next week, so maybe then.
Jo

Wow, that would be great, Let me know about some type of reimbursement and it's No rush, I guess I can put it under my grow lights till spring. Do you know what cultivar it is. I'm a little nervous bringing in a True Comfrey.
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Post  littlejo on 1/3/2018, 5:48 pm

I'm not sure of the name, I used to have both but 1 died off. This 1 blooms a lot, but does not propagate by setting seeds, etc. More plants may grow form the roots, but you can always give them away!
1 note: comfrey does not do too good in SFG because it sends it's roots deep to collect nutrients for the leaves(fertilizer)
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Post  SQWIB on 1/5/2018, 4:20 pm

@littlejo wrote:I'm not sure of the name, I used to have both but 1 died off. This 1 blooms a lot, but does not propagate by setting seeds, etc. More plants may grow form the roots, but you can always give them away!
1 note: comfrey does not do too good in SFG because it sends it's roots deep to collect nutrients for the leaves(fertilizer)
Jo

Thank-you. This is not for a SFG these will be planted ground level around my yard. I have 4 spots that I want to fill in with something and figured comfrey would be perfect.
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Post  littlejo on 1/5/2018, 7:24 pm

The comfrey has a pretty blue flower.
Will check on the confrey , my strawberries, and other winter growers as soon as the snow melts, maybe Monday.
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Post  sanderson on 3/17/2018, 7:29 pm

Someone sent me some comfrey seeds (terrible record keeping) and they have sprouted!  I will plant them in pots.  How big do they get?  Will 2 fit in a 10 or 12" pot.  Or do they each need their own pot?  Thank you in advance. Comfrey Comfre10

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Post  littlejo on 3/17/2018, 8:17 pm

Sanderson,
I did not send you the seeds, but I'll see if I can answer. Comfrey  has a long taproot after it gets full grown. That makes it able to draw nutrients from deep in ground and put in leaves. I suppose 1 per pot til bigger, then it could be put in ground, it will winter over very well. Mine was still green when it snowed, and already has blossoms on 1.
They grow real fast.
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Post  sanderson on 3/17/2018, 8:21 pm

Thanks

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Post  SQWIB on 6/22/2018, 7:14 am

Shout out to Littlejo for sharing some Comfrey, thanks again, it's now the turtles favorite spot.



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Post  Kelejan on 6/22/2018, 12:22 pm

@sanderson wrote:Someone sent me some comfrey seeds (terrible record keeping) and they have sprouted!  I will plant them in pots.  How big do they get?  Will 2 fit in a 10 or 12" pot.  Or do they each need their own pot?  Thank you in advance. Comfrey Comfre10

Comfrey grows up to three feet tall.  When starting to grow in the spring, it can be cut right down and the leaves are good for the compost pile with all those nutrients  from deep in the ground. It regrows quickly.  I have had access to a dozen comfrey plants just down the road from me and usually I harvest twice, then let them grow to flower and seed. The plants are on city property, that strip of land fronting houses that the householder has right of way so as to gain access to his/her property. 

Unfortunately for me, the hose that is above the property has been sold and the new occupant is stripping all the wild vegetation on this land and is going to make it well-groomed and pretty. so there will go "my" comfrey.  I must go and check on the wild part of my garden and see if the comfrey I planted there has survived.
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Post  No_Such_Reality on 6/22/2018, 8:21 pm

I'm intrigued to try comfry but a bit cautious given my recent experience with borage. I wanted borage.  Tried to grow borage. I failed.  Then...  Borage grew.  I let it grow. Into a big bold plant four feet high and six feet in diameter.

I took seeds and transpalneted where I wanted them, they're growing. Ive also been pulling borage out of my SFG every week.  And pulling from by the compost.  And pulling it from the lawn.  And pulling it every where I walked when carrying the cuttings to the compost or going to make the cuts.
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Post  OhioGardener on 8/12/2018, 5:22 pm

@No_Such_Reality wrote:I'm intrigued to try comfry but a bit cautious given my recent experience with borage. I wanted borage.  Tried to grow borage. I failed.  Then...  Borage grew.  I let it grow. Into a big bold plant four feet high and six feet in diameter.

I have had similar experience with Comfrey that you describe with its cousin, Borage.  I have it growing in a fence row of what used to be a pasture for cattle we raised. It has spread several feet on each side of the fence, and is controlled only by regular mowing. The good thing about it, though, is that it is great for Compost Starter and for making Comfrey Tea fertilizer which the peppers and tomatoes love. I originally thought that if I kept it cut down so that it did not go to seed it would not spread. Not so, it spreads by root very fast. Another benefit of it, though, is that the deer can't stand it and won't jump over the fence into our garden area as long as that comfrey is there. Very Happy
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Post  OhioGardener on 3/17/2019, 1:58 pm

I am looking for some Russian Comfrey Bocking 14 root pieces. The flowers from the Russian Comfrey are supposed to be sterile and will not spread like Common Comfrey does.  I want to start a batch of them along the property line in the front yard as both decorative plants, and for the leaves to use in compost.  I found several sites that sell the crown and roots, but they all seem pretty expensive.

Anyone have Russian Comfrey Bocking 14 plants to verify they do not spread wildly?  If so, would you be willing to share some root pieces.
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Post  Kelejan on 3/17/2019, 3:40 pm

I commented on this thread over a year ago (the page previous to this, and as it was too early in the year I lost the opportunity to take some roots. they were beautiful plants and as I said, I harvested then twice before letting them go to seed. It was some years before I found out, via this forum, that they were Russian Comfrey.  they were handsome plants, and after cutting to ground lever after the harvesting, they recovered well and grew very quickly.  They have lots of goodness in them.

The Duplex being built above them are getting to the finishing stage, but alas all the forecourt (that actually belongs to the city, was dug up several feet deep to give a level entrance to the two garages.  All the topsoil  was take away so I am sure there will be no more Comfrey. Last year at the Farmers' Market one stallholder was selling ointment that contained comfrey but I was not able to give her any roots that she wanted.

Missed opportunity for me.
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Post  plantoid on 3/18/2019, 6:07 pm

@OhioGardener wrote:I am looking for some Russian Comfrey Bocking 14 root pieces. The flowers from the Russian Comfrey are supposed to be sterile and will not spread like Common Comfrey does.  I want to start a batch of them along the property line in the front yard as both decorative plants, and for the leaves to use in compost.  I found several sites that sell the crown and roots, but they all seem pretty expensive.

Anyone have Russian Comfrey Bocking 14 plants to verify they do not spread wildly?  If so, would you be willing to share some root pieces.
I seem to remember that  Bocking 14  was defined  by the Henry  Double Day foundation, due to being the 14 sample they were trialing .. can't remember where the name Bocking came from but it might be the name of the place where the institute  was situated .

It is not invasive and does flower , our plants... 3 foot apart  gave forth sort of half lilcac to blue colours giving around 150 flowers per plant each being about three quarters an inch across by three quarters deep . 
I tried to grow some of their seeds but none took . Propagating a chip of root from near the crown the size of a thumb nail with a growth node onit is the easiest  way to get it to reproduce .  
 Slips keep well in damp peat or well damp  paper towels in a heat sealed food bag in a small strong carton for almost a week in the postal system  & will still grow so long as they haven't been exposed to excessive heat .  I know that because that's how I got mine from a friend up in Scotland .

Honey bees love them so do most nectar drinking insects , butterflies  & moths  as it has a long flowering season . 

Till last year we had nine plants along out front garden wall . They reached about 3 foot tall with a spread of the same size . ( I purposely weed killed them when I killed off the old lawn for re- seeding in September last year ) .

 I'm not sure that Russian variety you mention is quite the same thing & I'm too lazy to read " The history of Comfrey"  that I have on my Kindle to find out as it has several hundred pages to plough through find out . Embarassed
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Post  sanderson on 3/21/2019, 4:02 am

I'm glad this post was bumped to remind me to start some comfrey seeds. The seeds I received last year were viable but life got in the way from nurturing the starts.

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Post  OhioGardener on 7/28/2019, 2:53 pm

A friend sent me 5 little pieces of Comfrey Bocking 14 roots, each one was about 1" long and didn't look like anything that would grow. He assured me they would grow, but it might take them a while to get started. Since our ground is too dry and hard to plant anything this time of year, I decided to start them in pots and then transplant them outdoors this fall when the rain starts again.

And, grow they did! I put them about 2" deep in 6" pots filled with the same potting soil I use to start seeds in the spring, and kept them watered.  Now, just over a month later I have 5 healthy looking plants. They already have roots coming out the bottom of the pots, so not sure if they can wait until fall for transplanting.

The Bocking 14, as noted in posts above, has sterile seeds, and does not become invasive like the original Comfrey.  The rate at which these plants are growing, next summer I will probably be able to share root cuttings from them.


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Post  Kelejan on 7/31/2019, 11:25 am

OG, I think myself that when roots start coming trhough the bottom of the pot they should go into the next larger pot to continue the good work.
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Post  plantoid on 8/1/2019, 6:15 pm

Up date on the Bocking 14.
 
For a couple of years I've been cutting it back every three or four weeks , dropping the cut into the compositing bins 
 
Late last year I used some of this compost that was made several years ago to enrich some veg beds as well as the flower beds . I also used some supposedly quality organic soil enhancer with mixed manures 

 This morning I have discovered that there must have been viable seeds or parts with root nodes in the compost or the enhancer for I've got a couple of dozen baby comfrey two inches to six inches tall in several of my raised beds  including two of the raise veg beds  
 
 I'm going to weed kill them off tomorrow if it stays dry for I daren't risk pulling them out and leaving viable bits behind in the beds for it to emerge with a vengeance in future years  or when I'm on holiday
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Post  OhioGardener on 8/2/2019, 9:00 am

Very interesting, Plantoid.  Since Comfrey Bocking 14 is sterile, and doesn't spread by seed, I wonder how they started in the beds?  One thing I learned about Comfrey is that when I use the leaves for mulch I make sure I don't include the stems. If the leaves & stems are cut off near the plant and then laid on the soil for mulch, the end of the stems will sprout roots and start growing a new plant.  But, if I remove the stem before laying the leaf on the soil for mulch, they don't start roots.
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Post  Kelejan on 8/2/2019, 12:53 pm

That's interesting OhioG, no doubt it applies to other plants.
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Post  plantoid on 8/4/2019, 2:52 pm

Ohio gardener  , Thanks for the insight about leaf stem propagation .

 I think the seeds came in with the " bagged compost"  for there hasn't been any of my comfrey leaves put directly in/on the beds ..they always went into the Dalek composters as part of the varied materials mix for a good compost . The resulting compost was not used for thee or more years 

 Dave
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Post  OhioGardener on 8/4/2019, 5:27 pm

Today I cut the Comfrey and mulched the tomato plants with the cut leaves. Next year I need to double the number of Comfrey plants I have so that there will be more mulch & compost available.

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Post  OhioGardener on 8/12/2019, 9:12 pm

@OhioGardener wrote:A friend sent me 5 little pieces of Comfrey Bocking 14 roots, each one was about 1" long and didn't look like anything that would grow. He assured me they would grow, but it might take them a while to get started. Since our ground is too dry and hard to plant anything this time of year, I decided to start them in pots and then transplant them outdoors this fall when the rain starts again.

And, grow they did! I put them about 2" deep in 6" pots filled with the same potting soil I use to start seeds in the spring, and kept them watered.  Now, just over a month later I have 5 healthy looking plants. They already have roots coming out the bottom of the pots, so not sure if they can wait until fall for transplanting.

The Bocking 14, as noted in posts above, has sterile seeds, and does not become invasive like the original Comfrey.  The rate at which these plants are growing, next summer I will probably be able to share root cuttings from them.


Comfrey Comfre10

An update to the above post - Since the plants were getting too big for the 6" pots the Comfrey root cuttings were in, I decided to go ahead and plant them in their permanent location in spite of the very dry spell we have been having. I amended the Ohio clay soil with some compost, and then transplanted them into the soil. They don't seem to have minded the dry soil conditions, and have more than doubled in size since they were planted on the 2nd of August. They should be well established to survive the winter months.

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