Vegtable of the week Dark leafy greens

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This topic contains 6 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by KBratnTex KBratnTex 4 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #5128233 Report Abuse
    wilderness_NY_Z4
    wilderness_NY_Z4
    Participant

    Kale, spinach and chard.  Since these vegetables all have very similar growing habits I decided to group them together.  I don’t grow any of these vegetables so am afraid the information I have is not from experience.  However, I am growing kale this year to feed 4 family guinea pigs.  I hope you will join in with your experiences.
    Kale does not do well in hot weather, but doesn’t mind the cold. Depending on your climate kale can also be sown in October for spring use if covered with straw during the winter. Kale is rich in Vitamins A and C, high in potassium, calcium and iron, and is a good source of fiber. Kale maintains flavor best when frozen. Kale is also great in salads.

    Plant kale as soon as the ground can be worked, very frost tolerant. Kale germinates easily in cool or warm soil temperatures with even moisture.

    Choose an area with full sun and a soil pH of 6.0-7.0. Enrich the soil with compost or well rotted manure. Flavor of kale is improved if the plants grow quickly. Kale benefits from additional feedings of liquid fertilizer during the growing season.

    Companion planting bush bean, beet, celery, cucumber, lettuce, onion, potato.

    Swiss chard is one of the easiest vegetables to grow, it will keep growing right through the winter in mild climates. Swiss chard is a good source of beta-carotene. Also known as chard, these greens come from a variety of beet grown for its stems and leaves, not the roots.

    Swiss Chard thrives in cool weather, so plant as soon as the soil can be worked, or at soil temperatures of 10-29°C (50-85°F). For a fall crop, plant again in late August or early September.

    Swiss chard prefer full sun, but will tolerate light shade, with a soil pH of 6.2-7.0. Moderate feeder, requires a fertile, well cultivated soil. Enrich soil with plenty of compost and well rotted manure. Needs even moisture for good growth. Drought and warm temperatures will cause premature bolting. For all season production, provide regular feedings with a well balanced fertilizer or compost tea.

    The tender, flavorful vitamin-rich swiss chard leaves may be cut as soon as they are big enough to eat. Harvested regularly, Swiss Chard will continue to produce fresh greens.

    Spinach is mainly an early-spring and late-fall crop, but in some areas, where summer temperatures are mild, it may be grown continuously from early spring until late fall where tempatures changes are not severe.

    Spinach will grow on almost any well-drained, fertile soil where sufficient moisture is available. Spinach is very sensitive to acid soil. If a soil test shows the need, apply lime to the part of the garden used for spinach, regardless of the treatment given the rest of the area. Use thinned spinach plants in salad – they are very nutritious and taste great!

    Spinach thrives in cool weather, so plant as soon as the soil can be worked or when soil temperatures are between 10-24°C. For a fall crop, plant spinach again in late August or early September.

    Spinach does well with bush beans, cabbage family, celery, lettuce, onion, pea.

    Spinach prefer full sun to partial shade with a soil pH of 6.5-7.5. Spinach are moderate feeders require a fertile, well cultivated soil. Enrich soil with plenty of compost and some partially rotted manure or fertilizer high in nitrogen. Spinach needs even moisture for good growth. Drought and warm temperatures will cause premature bolting in spinach.

    Cut spinach as soon as leaves are big enough to eat. If spinach is looking old and tired, cut the entire plant back to 1” tall to stimulate young, tasty growth. If spinach showing signs of bolting, harvest the whole crop – it freezes well.

    Information was obtained from usagardener.com


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    • This topic was modified 4 months, 3 weeks ago by Jill Staake Jill Staake.
    #5128296 Report Abuse
    Grandmaof2
    Grandmaof2
    Participant

    Thanks for the info, Bette. I am growing spinach and need to get it in the ground soon. I had planned to plant it in the bed with my peas, but I don’t think the peas came up, so I will plant it and the cabbage in that bed I guess, and hope the raccoon doesn’t dig them up. I really need to set the trap for him.

    Then I think I will plant beans behind the spinach and cabbage.


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    #5128693 Report Abuse
    wilderness_NY_Z4
    wilderness_NY_Z4
    Participant

    Leslie, I hope your peas make it.  Get that trap out.  I hope the information was useful for you and others.  When we grew spinach we direct sowed the seed.


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    #5129352 Report Abuse
    steve232__nc
    steve232__nc
    Participant

    Lots of good information there Bette but I don’t grow any of those so I can’t add much to it. Sorry I haven’t been here for a couple of days but I’ve been out of action.


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    #5129517 Report Abuse
    Grandmaof2
    Grandmaof2
    Participant

    Bette, I checked yesterday and the peas are up. In fact I will need to thin them but I wonder if I can move some a little to just make a double row. I gave them some water for now and I’m hoping they grow before the heat is here to stay.


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    #5129949 Report Abuse
    wilderness_NY_Z4
    wilderness_NY_Z4
    Participant

    Leslie, I have never tried moving peas.  You might try just a few and wait a few days and see what happens.  You would need to keep them watered real well.


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    #5130930 Report Abuse
    KBratnTex
    KBratnTex
    Participant

    Don’t know if it qualifies, but I grow tender greens and they seem to really be growing slow this year. I assume it is because of the goofy weather, as they are green and healthy. This week I plan to go out to the farm and gather some cow poop to make them some tea. I hope they get with the program. They are one of my favorites and I’m very popular with the family when I bring them to a gathering ;) and I cooked my last 2 bags from the freezer for our New Year’s Day luncheon.

    Grand, I’m planning to do the same with some of my beans. One row needs thinning and the other has many skips. I will dig my new hole first, then try my best to get enough soil with the transplant so it never notices it was moved. I have had good luck with this before, but never tried peas.


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