Mandragora officinarum, also known as mandrake, is a perennial herb that produces large, dark green leaves that sprout immediately from the root. It produces bright, ornamental flowers that are usually pink or purple in color, and blooms during late spring and early summer. Mandragora officinarum requires regular maintenance to keep healthy, but can thrive in most temperate climates.
Start Mandragora officinarum seeds in a small planter in a greenhouse during spring. Keep the soil consistently moist until the plant emerges from the soil. Water once per week and keep the seedlings inside the greenhouse until the following spring.
Remove Mandragora officinarum from the container and plant immediately in its permanent location just after the final frost of winter. Choose a location that receives about four hours of morning sun and partial afternoon shade. Dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball and of equal depth. Place the plant into the hole and back-fill with soil.
Water thoroughly just after planting to compact the soil around the roots. Continue watering once per week after planting during all seasons but winter. Reduce frequency of watering to once every 2 weeks during winter, and resume the regular schedule the following spring.
Feed Mandragora officinarum once every 2 months using a low nitrogen 0-10-10 fertilizer. Water the soil thoroughly both before and after application. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer for proper dosage.
Spread a 2-inch layer of mulch around the soil surrounding Mandragora officinarum plants to deter the growth of weeds and to help conserve moisture. Refresh the mulch as often as necessary to keep it 2 inches thick at all times.