(Apium gravéolens, Linn.). Umbellifera. Annual or biennial plants: leaf-stalks 6-15 in. long, bearing 3 pairs and a terminal leaflet, all of which are coarsely serrate and more or less ternately lobed or divided: flower stalk 2-3 ft. high, branched and leafy, bearing numerous rather small compound umbels of inconspicuous white flowers: fruit small, flattened on the sides, broader than long. Au ounce contains between 60,000 and 70,000 seeds.
Celery is known in America only as a garden vegetable and is cultivated mainly for the leaf stalks, which are blanched and eaten raw with salt, made into salads, or boiled and served like asparagus. Celery roots, leaves and seeds are also used in flavoring soups, meats, etc.
The garden form resembles wild celery, which grows over a wide range in Europe and Asia, but the plants are less acrid and pungent and the leaf-stalks are much larger and more meaty and solid.