Easy tips for how to grow kale in your backyard vegetable garden.
Learn when and how to plant kale, about harvesting kale, and uses for ornamental kale.
Kale is a member of the brassica family of cool season vegetables.
Kale is a hardy variety of cabbage with curly, dark green leaves.
1. Plant this cool season vegetable where it receives full sunshine to partial shade.
2. The plants prefer loamy, well-drained, moist (but not soggy) soil of average fertility.
3. The soil should not be too rich in nitrogen, with a pH of 6.5 to 6.8.
4. Extremely light, sandy soils and very heavy clay soils adversely affect the flavor of kale.
5. Nutritious kale makes an excellent fall crop.
6. It grows best during cool weather and its taste is improved by exposure to frost.
Instruction on how to plant kale is as follows:
Kale matures in from 55 to 65 days from planting seed.
Kale can be left in the ground, ready for harvesting as needed, throughout the early winter and sometimes even longer.
Spring-sown kale will continue to grow throughout the hot summer months.
However, the leaves will be bitter and tough.
To harvest the sweetest crop, keep spring-sown kale growing through the fall and begin harvest only after the leaves have been touched by frost.
In some northern regions, kale can be banked with snow and harvested throughout the winter months.
In milder climates where kale is tolerant of mild frosts, they make a spectacular showing of colorful foliage.
Ornamental kale grows in colored varieties of white, pink, fuchsia, green, red, and purple leaves.
If you are interested in planting big, bold foliage plants, try a plant such as sea kale.
It grows 3 feet tall, bearing glossy, blue leaves.
The tender spring shoots can be blanched and eaten.
Another variety ‘Colewort', towers over 5 feet tall.
Its flowers billow out in a huge baby's breath-like flower head display.
Now that you know how to grow kale, we want to share tips on using this cabbage variety.
Kale is rich in the vitamins and elements needed for good nutrition.
Use the vegetable in recipes as you would cabbage.
It is especially good when cooked, drained, mixed with a cream sauce, covered with breadcrumbs and butter, and baked until the top is brown.