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Forcing Types of Chicory

Cichorium intybus 'Chicons'

Full Sun
Moderate care
Moderate watering


USDA zone


Minimum temperature

Expected size








9 months to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

Forcing Types of Chicory Overview

Cichorium intybus can be group together into three distinctive types of Chicory - Forcing, Radicchio & Sugar Loaf. Forcing types have been bred for their plump leafy heads that are perfect for forcing production of 'chicons' when blanched. Sow in May and June, thinning seedlings to 15cm apart and provide plenty of water during dry periods. Force the heads by lifting the roots in November, and storing in trays of cool sand until needed. Plant the roots in a pot of moist compost with the crown exposed. Cover to exclude light and keep the container between 10 to 15C (50 - 60F). The chicons are normally ready to be harvested 4 weeks later. Chicory is very similar to Endive and is grown in the same way, and to confuse matters, it is commonly known as Endive by the French. The most commonly known forcing type is 'Wifloof' sometimes spelt 'Witlof'

Common problems with Forcing Types of Chicory

How to harvest Forcing Types of Chicory

Forced 'chicons' are ready to be harvested when they are roughly 15cm in height.

How to propagate Forcing Types of Chicory


You can propagate by seeds in the autumn or spring.

Special features of Forcing Types of Chicory

Attractive flowers

Crop rotation

Pot plant

Other uses of Forcing Types of Chicory


Edibles to Plant Out in June

Young plants started off indoors can now be planted out.

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Edible to Sow Under Cover in May

Successional sow small batches on a sunny windowsill or in a heated propagator, ready to plant out later in the month.

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