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Ao Shiso

Certified Organic Seed

Perilla frutescens

A versatile and delicious herb with complex flavor.

AKA Green Perilla. Used in traditional Japanese cooking, this powerfully aromatic and versatile herb is commonly used in sushi wraps, salads, pickles, cocktails, and teas. The leaves are large and flat making them easy to roll and slice as an elegant chiffonade. Some describe the taste as a cross between mint, cinnamon, basil, and anise. The plants are compact and suitable for an edible landscaping plan.

This variety is part of our Shumei Natural Agriculture Collection. Its growers are part of the global Shumei community and farm using Natural Agriculture practices. They shared seeds with us, which were then grown by our Shumei farmer-in-residence, Kenny Nakagawa. 

NOTE: Shiso can be aggressive in some locations. Here in zone 6A in NY's Hudson Valley we haven't had trouble with this variety being invasive, but the states of NJ, PA, VA, WV, MA, TN, KY, and DC do have P. frutescens listed on their states' invasive species registries, so if you live in one of these states, please abstain from growing this plant. For other locations, we recommend diligently deadheading the flower spikes before they're able to set seed and self-sow - and, of course, using the delicious leaves with abandon!

This lot was produced and processed in the Hudson Valley of New York State on our own certified organic seed farm, Four Fold Farm.

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Direct sow in late spring after danger of frost has passed, or start indoors in early spring, by pressing seeds into the surface of the soil, and keeping soil moist but not wet until seeds have germinated. Light aids in germination. Ideal germination temperature is around 70 degrees F. Shiso performs best in full sun and fertile, well-drained soil with regular water. Pinch back growing tips regularly to prevent flowering and to encourage shorter, bushier plants with more leaves. Pick leaves as desired for fresh use throughout the season.

Days to Germination 7-14
Days to Maturity 65
Planting Depth surface
Spacing in Row 12"
Spacing Between Rows 18"
Height at Maturity 30"
Width at Maturity 18"
Sun Preference Full Sun

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