This plant (cichorium intybus) is called by many persons " German coffee," on account of the use to which it is so extensively applied in Germany. It is very similar to the succory often found growing wild on the slaty soils of New England, and it may be profitably cultivated for home consumption, as a great quantity of it is now sold in New York and other places, all of which is imported from Europe. It is often mixed with the ground coffee sold in stores, but the Germans buy it separate and mix it with their coffee to suit themselves. When combined with coffee it has been called an adulteration, but this is not a correct application of the term, because it really does not impart inferior or injurious qualities to the coffee, but is by many persons considered an improvement. It at least imparts a superior taste to inferior coffee, and as it is cheaper and held to be as healthy, it should be purchased separately and mixed with coffee in quantities to suit the tastes of those who use it as a beverage. The proportions of the two used together are one of chiccory to three of coffee. This plant is now cultivated very extensively in France, Germany, Holland, and England. It is sown and cultivated in rows, like the carrot, and the roots are taken up early in the autumn. Farmers who cultivate it on a large scale partially dry the roots and sell them to manufacturers, who roast, grind, and pack them up for sale. Those who cultivate little patches for their own family use, store the roots in their cellars, cover them with sand, take out a few as wanted, wash, cut them in slices, roast them like coffee, and then grind them.
This article was originally published with the title "Chiccory Cultivation"