What is easy to grow all year round in our Vancouver climate – KALE, KALE, KALE! What is more it is one of the most nutrient dense veggies you can get your hands on – boasting high levels of beta carotene, Vit C & Calcium . It can be used for juicing and in salads, stir fries, soups, dips and more. So here are some top tips on growing more kale this year.
1. Buying seeds or seedlings: Just pop to Choices supermarket or your local garden center and buy some kale seeds or kale transplants – there are lots of fun varieties to choose from. My favorite is Red Russian – it is sooo productive. You can also order your kale seeds on line with West Coast Seeds. http://www.westcoastseeds.com/productdetail/vegetable-seeds/Kale-and-Collards/Red-Russian/
2. When to sow your kale seeds/ transplants: You can sow your kale seeds or plant your transplants anytime in the Spring after the last frost and in September about 6 weeks before the first frost.
To give your Kale seeds a head start you can also start them inside or in a green house.
3. Sowing & maintaining your kale seeds: If you are planting your seeds directly outside – dig a small trench in a sunny area of your food garden about 1/2 inch deep and pop in 1 kale seed every 16 inches.
Keep well watered and if you want to give it some extra love – fertilise it with some “Kelp Man” every month.
4. Harvesting your kale – Kale matures quickly and can be harvested in 2 months. You can use the young leaves to create delicious and nutricious salads and juices. More mature kale is great for cooked greens in stir fries, soups and dips.
Kale tastes sweeter after a touch of our winter frost and can be a little bitter in summer – you can create your own frost by popping it in the freezer a little.
To learn more about growing kale join Sharon Hanna “kale evalgelist” at our Main Street location this Wednesday April 18th at our Main Street location 5.30 – 6.30 pm. And if you can’t get there you can pick up “The Book on Kale” by Sharon Hanna – coming out in early May.
So go on out and have lots of fun growing more kale!!