How to Grow Kale

How to grow kale

Planting

You can plant kale seeds in a coldframe, greenhouse or windowsill in pots. Your Goody Foody Gardener will bring you plug plants that are ready to go directly into the raised bed when 6 inches or 15cm tall

Sow seeds from late March and plugs are planted out from the end of April to early May.

Cover your raised bed with netting to protect tiny plants and add slug traps or similar. Slugs and snails can completely destroyed kale plug plants.

Growing

Kale grows quickly once in the raised bed. Feed them early in the season either with multi purpose vegetable feed, or mulching with well rotted compost or farm yard manure. Mulching means covering the soil around the plants with a layer at least an inch thick. This has two benefits, it keep the soil moist and slowly releases feed to the plants.

Kale is very prone to damage from caterpillars and pigeons. Prevent this by covering the plants covered with an insect proof net. Your Gardener will provide this.

Harvesting

Pick the leaves when the plants reach about ten inches tall. The kale will keep growing throughout the year and can often be left in the ground right through until the next spring.

You can grow it as a winter crop when there is not much else available in the garden. As a rule of thumb, do not pick more than a third of the plant at any one time. This will allow the plant to regrow. Do not pick the leaves from the growing centre of the plant, pick the older, larger leaves from the outside.

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