Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Transplanting Kale

Transplanting Kale
Mature kale plants can be transplanted.
The Red Russian Kale I started from seed in January this year is trying to take over my garden. Red Russian is a beautiful plant with wonderful flavor. The leaves look a lot like oak leaves; they are silvery green with red veins and stems. The plants have grown to about 18 inches tall and at least that wide. This is a really sturdy plant, and it is perennial, although some grow it as an annual in fall gardens.

Because it is perennial, I thought it would be a nice addition to the edible landscape I'm trying to establish in our side yard. I've been trying to get seeds started out there all year, and for some reason I'm just not having much luck. Transplanting is the answer.

I wasn't sure how the kale would stand up to being moved, so I started with just a few. I dug them up out of the garden bed, root balls as intact as possible and transplanted them into the new planter. They wilted immediately. Plants do that when their roots are disturbed. I'm happy to report that despite the initial shock, they appear to be rebounding this morning. They are standing back up, for the most part. I may still lose some of the leaves, but the plants look like they'll make it. Fortunately, it was a cool cloudy day which is ideal for transplanting. Today is about the same, so heat and too much light won't be a problem. I so hope they make it. The kale growing in the landscape will be so pretty.

Kale is pretty easy to transplant. Plan to transplant either on a cloudy, cool day or later in the afternoon. Use a small trowel to dig around the roots. Lift the plant with the roots intact and as much soil as you can out of the ground. Prepare a hole in fertile, well-drained soil. Place the roots and soil into the new hole, back fill with soil and lightly press down on the soil. Water well immediately after transplanting.

1 comment:

  1. Yum, kale and sausage creamed soup!


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