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Kale Growing Information

Kale Germination Information

Kale Seed Germination How to Sow Kale:

  • Best sown indoors at a temperature of 68-70° and at a depth of 4 times the size of the seeds.
  • Expect germination in 10 days
  • Start indoors in midwinter with planting out as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring.
  • Seeds can also be sown outdoors in early spring while the soil is still cool.
  • In Zones 8 and warmer, sow in late summer or early fall for a winter and spring crop.
  • In cooler areas, sow in mid-summer for a fall crop. Sow at the same depth as above.
  • It is 65 days from sowing to maturity.

How to Grow Kale:
Transplanting: Transplant when there are at least two sets of true leaves

Spacing:  Space 18-24 inches apart in rows spaced 18-24 inches apart.

Soil:  Site in full sun in a loamy, moist, well-drained soil

Additional Care: Fertilize prior to planting and again every 3-4 weeks. Keep plants well watered and mulch them to keep the soil cool,weed-free, and moist. Kale is a cool-season crop that is very tolerant of cold temperatures. In fact, frost will improve the flavor.

Appearance and Use:

A relative of Cabbage and Collards that is also grown for its tasty leaves. Rather than heading like Cabbage, plants grow as 21/2 foot tall, open stalks that bear the large, red, green, or blue-green leaves. To reduce bitterness, the leaves must be cooked before being eaten. Harvest leaves as needed via the “cut and come again” protocol: do not disturb the growing point of the plant. Refrigerate for 3-4 days to improve the flavor of summer-harvested leaves.

About Kale:
Botanical name: BRASSICA oleracea
Pronunciation:  bras’i-kå o-ler-a’-se-å
Lifecycle:  Perennial
Origination: Brassicaceae; native to coastal Europe.