Kale also known as borecole is a plant that belongs to the species Brassica Oleracea. Kale plant comes in green or purple leaves. Though it belongs to the same family of cabbage, Kale plant doesn’t form a head. Kale plant is very nutritious and is rich in iron and vitamins like A and C. Kale plant is a must have for any gardener when it comes to healthy eating.
Kale plants are very hardy and robust. They do well in different growing conditions.Kale plants also grow well in winter. Growing kale is possible in moderate soils, though they love well drained, organic matter rich soils.
Types of Kale – Kale Varieties
There are several types of kale to choose from while growing kale. These varieties are available
- Curly Kale – Frilled leaves
- Dino Kale – Long leaves with mottled- savoy like appearance
- Red Russian Kale – Frilled leaves
- Purple Kale
Tips on How to grow Kale
Though kale is hardy, properly planting kale plants will give good harvests. Kale prefers soil that is well drained as stated above and does well in locations that receive full sun. Kale prefers temperature that is between 18-25 deg C or 65 to 75 deg F. Growing kale in temperatures outside of their optimum range will result in leaves that are bitter. One tip is to ensure the soil is covered with mulch to keep the soil/potting medium temperature lower. If you are Growing Kale in India, then the right time to start planting is during September and October. You can plant them every month to get continuous yield all winter long.
Planting Kale Plants
Kale plants are started from seeds. Read seed starting techniques before planting kale. For planting kale earlier in the season, you might want to start the seeds indoor to avoid frost damage in the temperate weathers. For tropics, planting kale seeds can be done at the start of the winter. Growing kale is very easy. Simply sow the kale seeds in potting mix or soil roughly about 1 cm or 0.5 inch deep. Keep the soil moist to speeden the germination process. Planting kale can be done once the weather is right. You can plant kale either in the outdoors or in a container that is big enough.
I planted kale by starting them from seeds. I had two varieties of Kale with me, Curly Kale and Dino Kale. Like other plants in the brassica family, kale has a shallow root system. So ensure the soil doesn’t dry out. Growing kale plants is so easy and fast. Kale plants mature in about two months. Since you are going to only harvest the leaves, kale plants leaves can be harvested as early from a month from planting.
Kale leaves can be harvested from the bottom up. Take the older leaves and leave the younger ones in the plant for them to grow. Growing kale is so quick that you will be harvesting them sooner than you thought.
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