Champion Collard

Brassica oleracea

$4.95

Pkt(≈180 seeds)
Certified Organic
70 days. We think collards are underutilized in the garden and kitchen. It’s just about the easiest vegetable to grow. Started in the early spring, collards will produce copious amounts of greens from spring through late fall. Champion is quite cold hardy and with luck (and perhaps some protection), plants will survive the winter and provide early spring baby greens and collard raab (flowering stalks). Sometimes collards will become perennial if flowering stalks are removed from plants in spring or early summer (we have a patch that is 4 years old!). Collards develop sweetness as the weather turns cooler in the fall. Highly nutritious. Prepare collards like kale—harvest younger, more tender leaves, remove stems and chop small. Soy sauce and garlic really enhance collard's flavor. Alternatively, you can prepare a “mess-o-greens,” the traditional African-American way with ham hocks and long-cooking. Collards can be preserved by blanching and freezing.

Collards tolerate cold weather so they can be started extra early. Start collard seeds indoors 3/1 at 72-85° (can use a heating mat). Days to germination: 5-8. Transplant outside 3/27, 12” apart. Or, sow collard seeds directly outside anytime 3/27 – 8/1. Sow 3-4 seeds together in a group ½” deep, spaced 12” between groups. Keep seeds evenly moist until germination. Thin to the strongest plant in each group. Protect collard plants from deer, groundhogs, and rabbits which will devour them. Collard plants may be eaten by several different species of caterpillars. If they cause damage, hand remove caterpillars or spray organic BT.