Crunchy, green stalks characterize mature celery, yet for some growers, it can be difficult to get celery to that point. Celery requires a lot of moisture, so it should be planted in a soil that can hold water well [sources: Spencer and The Editors of the Garden Way Publishing]. The moisture requirements can be a burden on some gardeners who might not be used to consistent watering. The plant also has a long growing season of about 120 to 180 days from seed to harvest [source: Bartley]. During the growing season, celery also needs cooler temperatures, making it a difficult plant to grow during the summer in the Midwest or South.
As an alternative to celery, Bartley recommends cutting celery, which has the celery flavor, but is actually grown for its leaves instead of its stalks.