Plant Swiss chard in the spring, 2 to 4 weeks before the last frost date.Get your growing season off to a great start by mixing in several inches of aged compost or other rich organic matter into your native soil.Harvest Swiss chard any time the leaves are large enough to eat.Apply organic mulch such as compost, finely ground leaves, wheat straw, or finely ground bark to keep the soil cool and moist and to keep down weeds.Mulching will also help keep the plant leaves clean, reducing the risk of disease. .

How to Plant and Grow Swiss Chard

vulgaris, (Cicla and Flavescens Groups) Swiss chard, B. vulgaris, is a type of beet.Read on for all you need to know to grow it in your garden!Successful cultivation requires a location that gets full sun to part shade, with soil that is organically rich and well-draining.In addition to growing it for consumption, B. vulgaris is often cultivated as an ornamental.And whether you grow it to eat or just to look at, this cut-and-come-again vegetable should have its leaves snipped frequently to encourage further leaf formation throughout the growing season.B. vulgaris grows from irregularly-shaped seed clusters that contain several seeds in each.How to Grow.Choose a smaller-stature variety, and trim leaves as soon as they reach six inches, to encourage more leaf than root growth.For garden plants, you may cut leaves at heights from six inches to two feet, depending upon plant size.In addition, leaving mature leaves unharvested may result in more root growth and fewer new leaves.Place one seedling every 12 inches, leaving about 18 inches between rows.Water and maintain even moisture, never allowing the soil to completely dry out during the plants’ acclimation to their new location.Some folks like to grow “baby greens,” meaning they like to harvest them at a height of at least six inches tall.Once established, plants need an inch or so of water throughout the growing season.Good “companions” are those with similar sun, soil, and water needs that don’t attract pests and diseases that would have an adverse effect on your vegetable.Read more about companion plants for chard here.Space according to planned use as “baby greens” or full-size leaves.The standard cultivar has a smaller stature, with stalks from 8 to 10 inches tall, making it a perfect container gardening choice.A larger version of ‘Fordhook,’ this cultivar tops out at 24 inches.If you’re looking for a variety prized not only for its flavor, but its exceptional heat and cold tolerance, white-ribbed, light green-leaved ‘Lucullus’ may be the one.It reaches a height of up to 24 inches, and often winters over, for an early spring crop.Billed as “bolt-resistant,” this beauty has bright orange stems and dark green leaves.Stalks are 8 to 10 inches tall, making it suitable for a small container garden.With its abundant bright red stems and dark green leaves, ‘Ruby’ makes a pretty ornamental as well as an edible in the summer through fall landscape.Chard is not prone to insects or disease.With nutrient-rich soil, good drainage, adequate aeration between vegetables, and a minimum of weeds, you’re well on your way to success.It’s also wise to rotate crops and not co-plant with spinach or beets, to inhibit insects specific to this botanical group, such as the beet leafhopper, that winter over in the soil and live their lives on these plants, as well as chard.They attract leafminers and their seedlings closely resemble those of chard, so weed well and with caution!Curly top disease, that affects leaves and roots and is spread by the beet leafhopper.Remove any leaves that are damaged by animals, insects, or disease, and discard them.This vegetable is a cut-and-come-again species that provides multiple harvests during the growing season.Harvesting stalks when they are young and tender, at about six inches tall, is an excellent way to get the maximum number of harvests per year.When harvesting both young and older leaves, always take the outer leaves first, leaving the younger, inner ones to continue to grow.Make clean cuts across each stem about an inch above the base of the plant.Get more information on harvesting Swiss chard here.You may enjoy the leaves and stems cooked or uncooked, together or separately.When preparing it, consider cutting up the leaves and stalks separately.This way, you may remove cooked leaves and allow the somewhat tougher stems to continue on until tender.Young leaves are excellent when lightly wilted in sautés.Plant Type: Annual or biennial vegetable Growth Rate: Fastest in cool weather Native To: Sicily, naturalized in Europe and the Americas Maintenance: Low Hardiness (USDA Zone): Annual 2-11, biennial 6-11 Soil Type: Rich, organic Season: Spring to hard frost Soil pH: 6.0-8.0 Exposure: Full sun to part shade Soil Drainage: Well-draining Time to Maturity: 50-60 days Companion Planting: Brassicas, celery, chamomile, coreopsis, lettuce, mint, nasturtium, radishes, sweet alyssum Spacing: 12 inches Avoid Planting With: Other subspecies of B. vulgaris (beetroot, sugar beet), corn, curcurbits, most herbs, potatoes Planting Depth: 1/2 inch Family: Amaranthaceae Height: 8-24 inches Subfamily: Chenopodiaceae Spread: 9-18 inches Genus: Beta Water Needs: 1 inch per week Species: B. vulgaris Tolerance: Cold, heat with adequate watering, light frost Pests & Diseases: Aphids, beet leafhoppers, blister beetles, flea beetles, leafminers, slugs, tarnished plant bugs, curly leaf fungus, root rot.Find the recipe on our sister site, Foodal.With your abundant harvest, you’ll find this dish is your new go-to-choice for impromptu get-togethers.If you use the leaves for a recipe and have stems leftover, consider them a vegetable in their own right, and prepare them separately.


Swiss Chard: Nutrition, Benefits and How to Cook It

What’s more, its leaves and stalks provide an abundance of vitamins, minerals and powerful plant compounds.3.7 grams Vitamin A: 214% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI).22% of the RDI Potassium: 27% of the RDI As you can see, a small serving of cooked Swiss chard covers your daily need for vitamins A and K and nearly fulfills the RDI for vitamin C. What’s more, Swiss chard is a good source of calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc, sodium, phosphorus and vitamin E.

This green is not only loaded with nutrients but also extremely low in calories, making it a weight-loss-friendly food.Research shows that Vitexin, another flavonoid found in Swiss chard, may help fight heart disease by lowering blood pressure, reducing inflammation and inhibiting blood clotting ( 8 ).Summary Swiss chard is high in many antioxidants including beta-carotene and flavonoids, which may help prevent certain conditions like heart disease and lung cancer.Just 1 cup (175 grams) of cooked Swiss chard provides about 4 grams of fiber — 15% of the RDI.Following a high-fiber diet provides many health benefits.Summary Swiss chard is high in fiber, an important nutrient that can help maintain weight, lower your risk of certain cancers and promote heart health.Just 1 cup (175 grams) of cooked Swiss chards offers 716% of the RDI for this important nutrient (17).Summary Swiss chard is an excellent source of vitamin K, a nutrient essential for proper blood clotting and skeletal health.Many large studies indicate that people with a higher intake of green leafy vegetables like Swiss chard have a decreased risk of heart disease.Summary Swiss chard may help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, which may prevent heart disease.May Decrease Insulin Resistance and Lower Blood Sugar Swiss chard is loaded with nutrients that may lower blood sugar, or glucose.For example, Swiss chard’s fiber may help maintain healthy glucose levels in your blood.Summary Swiss chard is high in fiber and antioxidants, which may improve blood sugar control and lower your risk of diabetes.Summary Swiss chard is high in fiber and low in calories, making it a weight-loss-friendly food.How to Add It to Your Diet Swiss chard is a nutritional powerhouse that you can eat in many ways.Summary Swiss chard is a mild green that can be used in a number of dishes, including salads, pastas and sides. .

Swiss chard: Possible health benefits, uses, and risks

Along with other leafy greens and descendants of the beet family, Swiss chard contains high levels of nitrates, which been shown to lower blood pressure , reduce the amount of oxygen needed during exercise, and enhance athletic performance.Just one cup provides over three times the recommended daily allowance of vitamin K.A cup of Swiss chard provides 44 percent of the daily allowance of vitamin A and 18 percent of the recommended amount of vitamin C.People whose diets are low in the minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium are more likely to have high blood pressure.A 2013 study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, found that foods that are high in dietary nitrates, like Swiss chard, have multiple vascular benefits.Swiss chard contains an antioxidant known as alpha-lipoic acid.This has been shown to lower glucose levels, increase insulin sensitivity, and prevent oxidative stress-induced changes in patients with diabetes.Dietary nitrates have been shown to improve muscle oxygenation during exercise.In one study, beetroot juice, also high in dietary nitrates, improved performance by 2.8 percent over 11 seconds in a 4-kilometer (km) bicycle time trial. .

The Only Process You Need to Know for Freezing Leafy Greens

If you're suffering from salad fatigue, or just can't eat another plate of sautéed spinach, we've got good news: Leafy greens are one of the easiest things to preserve.You can't preserve tender lettuce, but hardier greens like Swiss chard and kale lend themselves perfectly to freezing.No matter where you got your greens—farmers' market, farm stand, CSA, grocery store, your garden—it's important to rinse them clean of any dirt or (eek!).Once the water's boiling, add the clean greens and use tongs or a spoon to submerge them completely underwater.Using tongs or a wire spider strainer, transfer the greens to a large bowl or pot of ice water. .

How Do I Grow Swiss Chard

If you want to grow Swiss chard in your garden, here’s everything you need to know.The taste is reminiscent of spinach and beet greens, and the stalks come in green, red, purple, yellow and more.Where, When and How to Plant Swiss Chard.Swiss chard seeds can be direct sown any time after the last frost date, and the seeds will germinate once the soil temperature has reached 50°.The seeds can sprout in as few as five days if the soil temperature is between 50° and 85°.Transplants also offer less variety than seeds.Further amend the soil with a slow-release organic nitrogen fertilizer, such as blood meal, feather meal or cottonseed meal.Types and Varieties of Swiss Chard.The leaves are ready to harvest in 23 to 35 days from transplanting, and the plants have a good degree of disease resistance.It is an open-pollinated variety that is ready to harvest in 50 days.The plants grow 20 inches tall.Watering Swiss Chard.Instead, apply water at the base of the plants, under the leaves.Fertilizing Swiss Chard.If you have soil that is rich in organic matter and you fertilized with a slow-release organic nitrogen source at planting time, there won’t be much else that Swiss chard ever needs from you.Swiss Chard Pests & Diseases.Aphids are sap-sucking insects that can spread plant diseases as they damage crops.When you find leaves with leafminer damage, remove and dispose of them.To prevent mildew, plant in full sun and provide adequate spacing between plants so air can circulate.Harvesting Swiss Chard.Begin harvesting Swiss chard when the leaves are about six inches tall.Alternatively, cut stalks from the outside of the plant and leave behind the heart of the plant, which will continue to grow as well.joegardener blog: Powdery Mildew Prevention & Control.joegardener blog: How Do I Grow Spinach?joegardener blog: How Do I Grow Tomatoes?How Do I Grow Swiss Chard one-sheet.joegardener Online Gardening Academy™: Three popular courses on gardening fundamentals; managing pests, diseases & weeds; and seed starting!joegardener Online Gardening Academy Beginning Gardener Fundamentals: Essential principles to know to create a thriving garden.The selection of all items featured in this post and podcast were based solely on merit and in no way influenced by any affiliate or financial incentive, or contractual relationship.At the time of this writing, Joe Lamp’l has professional relationships with the following companies who may have products included in this post and podcast: Rain Bird, Corona Tools, Milorganite, Soil3, Exmark, Greenhouse Megastore, High Mowing Organic Seeds, Territorial Seed Company, Wild Alaskan Seafood Box and TerraThrive.However, we receive no additional compensation from the sales or promotion of their product through this guide. .

How to Grow Swiss Chard in Poor Soil

You can grow Swiss chard from seed or as transplants.Plant the seeds about 1 inch deep and about 2 to 6 inches apart.Fertilizer Requirements Swiss chard will grow in poor soil conditions, but an application of nitrogen fertilizer can help boost the leaf growth about two weeks after planting. .

How to Grow Swiss Chard

Swiss chard may not be the most common of garden vegetables, but it’s growing in popularity due to its versatility and hardiness.Swiss chard has crinkly leaves and looks a lot like savoy spinach, but its easier to grow and doesn’t bolt in hot weather either.Varieties of Swiss chard all have green leaves, but you can find a multitude of colors for the stalks.Fordhook Giant is one of the most popular home gardening varieties as it is easy to grow and is very hardy.Dig your soil thoroughly and add nutrients in the form of compost, aged manure or commercial fertilizer before you put in your seeds.For small leaves and a frequent harvest, you can just sprinkle the seeds over your intended Swiss chard patch and let the plants grow as they may.You should choose a sunny spot to plant your Swiss chard, but they are fine with a bit of shade during the hot weather.Overly dry or hot weather can cause the plants to bolt, but if you cut off the new flowering stalk right away, you can continue to harvest leaves.Swiss chard is a very good container plant, and also makes a nice ornamental addition to a flower garden.The old-fashioned saucer of beer usually helps to draw them away from your plants, or some heavy sprinklings of diatomaceous earth can also kill slugs.Leaf miners will chew tiny tunnels through your chard leaves and can be hard to get rid of.If this is a big problem in your area, you can use a fine layer of mesh over your plants during the spring to keep the flies away.Downy mildew can target your Swiss chard if you have been watering too much or your plants are clustered very close together.In mild climates, chard can be grown and harvested all through the winter as long as the weather is generally above freezing.A rough guideline is 2 or 3 plants per person, and you’ll have a good supply of chard all summer long. .


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