April 28, 2014

Hail Ye Kale! – Sustainable food project for the week in three easy steps.

In Canada, I introduced kale with my ‘Hale and Hearty recipes’ in my blog back in 2012. That was just the beginning of a committed love affair I have with this vegetable.

It’s quirky, it’s sometimes curly and ragged, sometimes flat and smooth, with leaves coloured from hues of green to even purple and it is one of the ultimate feel good greens (for me anyway). It’s packed with so many high doses of vitamins and minerals like K, C and A just to name a few and it has many versatile uses in food preparation…OR you could arrange it in a vase in the meantime as delicious foliage and it will make any window sill look good!

If I haven’t breathed my passion into this post enough for you already, then let’s see what else I can dig up. Oh yes! It’s so easy to grow!

It is literally the vegetable to plant when you don’t possess one of those handy little green thumbs (again, a bit like me).  It grows almost anywhere and for a long periods of the year. The flavour will vary with sweetness and bitterness depending on the climate.  The harvest is abundant and quick and will save you money in the process. Just when you think it is over and it starts flowering, you can cook and prepare those too for spring/summer salad consumption! Oh and just to top it off, you can harvest the seeds (thousands of them) for next year’s crop, and the year after and so on and on!

How to plant in three easy steps:-

1. Visit your local nursery when you have 15 minutes. I visited my local one ‘Anything Grows’ (they make good coffee too). Most reputable nurseries will stock at least one or two varieties and they will look something like this pictured and will cost around $5-6 per punnet.

Kale punnets

2. If you are unsure of the soil quality, buy some Plant Food; this one pictured by Searles will do the trick for approximately $15 however there are other options if you ask advice.

soilfood

3. In a perfect world, you’d loosen the soil with the plant food into the ground (or a large pot with potting mix) and wait a few days before sowing your seeds so to speak…but seriously who has the time?? Follow the instructions on the container for planting and go for it!

If you don’t start seeing inches of kale growing by the week, with a bit of watering and sun of course I’ll be surprised and a little disappointed for you.

Tips: 

I recommend buying at least twenty, perhaps 10 of each variety. The red russian seems to grow a bit quicker than the curly green kale.

Remember to water everyday unless it rains of course!

If you are getting a little confident about planting more greens in your garden or potted space, this website is awesome; Milkwood – http://milkwood.net/2014/04/26/winter-greens-what-to-plant-right-now/

I would love to hear how your garden of kale grows so please let me know and good luck!

tag

 

 

 

 

 

 

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