Kale is very similar to cabbage. It has thick stems and robust leaves, but it doesn’t form a head. The leaves can be curly, green, crinkled or purple. Some varieties of kale are used in flowering gardens to add extra texture and ornamental colour. Kale is considered a ‘super food’ because it is high in vitamins A, K, C, minerals of manganese, magnesium, and calcium, and it is almost a complete protein. It also has excellent levels of tryptophan which helps make the ‘feel good’ hormone serotonin.
In just one cup of raw Kale you can consume nearly 90% of the recommended daily amount (RDA) of vitamin C. That same cup of Kale also delivers 10% of your RDA of calcium
When, where and how to plant:
Soil needs to be well dug over prior to planting with a good general fertilizer added. Plant in full sun. Sow seed in late spring or plant out seedlings once the ground temperatures warm after winter. A second sowing or planting in autumn will produce a late winter/spring crop
Growing Guide Keep well watered through the dry periods. Kale can take anything from 8 to 10 weeks to mature. Once planted protect from slugs, snails with slug and snail bait. White butterflies with Derris Dust and aphids with an insect spray. Use Tui Eco pest as an organic solution
Harvest: Harvest leaves as they mature, regular picking will ensure you will get a long cropping period.
How to use: Kale is an excellent vegetable choice for stir-fries and Asian recipes. Use as a substitute for cabbage in coleslaw.