Kale is really a must for the backyard vegetable garden.Growing this veggie at home makes it easy to have a nutrient-dense green on hand, right outside your back door.To make sure you have a steady supply of this cruciferous vegetable, you’ll want to grow it in the best conditions – which, of course, includes knowing how much sun to provide it with.When grown for a spring or fall harvest, this veggie should be placed in a full sun location.You can plant it in partial shade during spring and fall, but it will likely produce smaller yields.This is the strategy I still adopt in order to harvest my favorite leafy greens in spring and summer – I plant them in a spot that receives full sun in spring, and partial shade in summer.Or, you might try growing these leafy vegetables in containers. .
Sun Recommendations for Planting Kale
Growing kale (Brassica oleracea acephala) successfully requires a delicate balance of sun, the right temperature and good soil preparation.Some of the best reasons to grow kale in the garden: It is tender, tasty and high in vitamins A and C.During this three month growing season, kale requires a temperature range between 40 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit.Care and Harvest Once the seedlings emerge, go ahead and thin them to a spacing of 12 inches between plants.To harvest kale at the end of the growing season, cut the whole plant at the soil line. .
10 Tips for Growing Kale
Start spring seeds indoors approximately six weeks before the last frost to give plants a chance to mature before summer’s worst heat.Plant your crop again in the fall, six to eight weeks before the first expected frost — you can keep harvesting even after snowfall.Kale is buddy-buddy with beets, celery, cucumbers, herbs, onions, spinach, chard, and potatoes.Protect young plants with row covers like this to stave off flea beetles and provide a buffer against any unexpected temperature dips.Picking off unhealthy-looking leaves and keeping your plants well-fed with compost and water will also reduce insect damage in your vegetable garden,.Use straw or grass mulch at the base of your plants to keep the soil cool, conserve moisture, and make it easier for roots to feed.This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. .
How to Grow Kale
Common Name Kale, ornamental kale Botanical Name Brassica oleracea Family Brassicaceae Plant Type Annual/biennial, vegetable Mature Size 1–2 ft. tall and wide Sun Exposure Full sun, partial sun Soil Type Loamy, moist, well-drained Soil pH Acidic (6.5 to 6.8) Bloom Time Spring Hardiness Zones 7–9 (USDA) Native Area Europe.Kale can be planted three to five weeks prior to your area’s projected last frost date in the spring.The fullest growth will occur when the plant gets six or more hours of direct sunlight on most days.However, if you live in a hot, dry climate, provide your plant with some shade, especially from the strong afternoon sun.Kale plants like to grow in a rich soil that's high in organic matter with a slightly acidic pH.The high nitrogen content provided by organic matter is crucial for healthy leaf growth.Water your kale plants regularly, so the soil stays evenly moist but not soggy.Along with cool temperatures, moist soil helps to keep the kale leaves sweet and crisp, rather than tough and bitter.Kale is a biennial plant, taking two growing seasons (or years) to complete its life cycle, but it's usually grown as an annual.Expect to wait approximately two months for your kale plants to mature from seeds.Check the days to maturity on your seed packet or plant label for more precise timing.Spring-planted kale will be good for harvesting throughout the summer months, but it's especially tasty after a light frost.You can harvest young kale leaves to use fresh in salads or allow your plants to mature for use as a cooked green.Plus, container growth is ideal if you don’t have garden space or the right soil conditions.An unglazed clay container is a good option because it will allow excess soil moisture to escape through its walls, helping to prevent root rot.Transplant your kale into the pot at the same depth it was growing in its previous container, and water it after planting.Plant the bottom half of the stem in a moistened soilless potting mix in a small container with drainage holes.If you can gently tug on the stem and feel resistance, you’ll know roots have formed.You can direct seed in cold climates as soon as the soil temperature is at least 45 degrees Fahrenheit.Start plants indoors in a seed-starting mix about six weeks before your last expected frost date.Kale seeds germinate quickly in warm soil and should sprout up within five to eight days.Kale is a member of the cabbage family, which is notorious for attracting insect pests and for rot diseases.Kale is susceptible to black rot and clubroot, as well as aphids, cabbage loopers, cabbageworm, cutworms, flea beetles, and slugs.The best defense is to monitor the plants often for signs of eggs or feeding, such as holes in the leaves.Kale is an easy vegetable to grow, as long as it gets sufficient light, water, and nutrients.Kale can be grown indoors, though you'll likely need a grow light if you don't have a window that gets lots of direct sun.
Best Shade-Tolerant Vegetables
Even in shady conditions, you can bask in great garden harvests if you choose the right crops and make a few easy adjustments.(The crops we grow for their fruits — such as eggplants, peppers and tomatoes — really do need at least six hours of full sun per day.).Crop Shade Notes Growing Tips Arugula At least three to four hours of sun per day.Arugula welcomes shade, as this crop is prone to bolting as soon as the weather turns warm if in full sun.Lettuce is perfect for shadier gardens because the shade protects it from the sun’s heat, preventing it from bolting as quickly.Often, the shade can buy a few more weeks of harvesting time that you’d get from lettuce grown in full sun.Beets, carrots, potatoes, radishes and turnips will do OK in partial shade, but you'll have to wait longer for a full crop.Alternatively, you can harvest baby carrots or small new potatoes for a gourment treat that would cost an arm and a leg at a grocery store.The estimates in this chart are based on the experiences of the author and the experts mentioned in Best Vegetables to Grow in the Shade. .
Home > Growing Kale.Cool weather helps provide kale with rich, bushy leaves that leave the plant green and flavorful.If you don’t have an area of your home with plenty of natural sun during the day, your kale may not thrive like it could if it were outside in the sunlight.Soil for kale should be well-draining and moist.The plants grow bushy and can spread a couple of feet wide, so you’ll want adequate space to keep them from competing with each other for nutrients and sunlight.One of the best ways to ensure that water remains even in kale’s soil is by mulching your kale’s garden bed.If you choose not to mulch, check your kale’s soil every few days.If the soil is dry a couple of inches down, it’s time to add some water.Kale can grow in most hardiness zones, but you’ll need to plant kale according to the weather in your region.If you do not have a room with adequate sunlight to give your kale for several hours per day, you can also move the containers to a sunny porch, or outside in the garden, to soak up the sun.Here’s a helpful video about planting kale indoors, if you choose to grow it year-round in containers:.Kale grows well alongside other plants that can give it a small amount of shade through the day, but not take away too much sunlight.You should also take care to space other plants a couple of feet away from kale so they don’t hinder your kale’s growth or compete with its nutrients.Here, you’ll find detailed resources for everything you need to know about growing kale in your garden, indoors, or in containers. .
Gardening With Vegetables That Grow in Shade
Celery, carrots, bush beans, and small-fruited tomatoes often are successful in spots where they can load up on sun early in the day.Where the opposite light pattern prevails – morning shade followed by afternoon sun – trellised vines including beans, peas, or cucumbers may excel.If you have only a little full sun, use it for a cold frame or nursery bed where you can grow leafy greens to transplant size.Wide spacing promotes good air circulation and light penetration, which in turn reduces problems with diseases.Finally, you can lighten the mood in dim spaces by using movable containers planted with variegated herbs like pineapple mint or tricolor sage, or light pastel impatiens or other shade-tolerant annuals.An intermitted edge comprised of mounds of white sweet alyssum will create natural footlights that also attract hoverflies and other beneficial insects. .