Collard Greens: The Poor Mans Crop

 Collard Greens

Collard Greens

By

Jannie Vaught

 

The subject of fall garden has been the topic of conversation. Are you putting in a fall garden is what I usually get asked and Yes is the answer! A fall garden is often more productive and use less water. Always a plus.

Another oldie but goodie garden plant are Collard Greens. Collards are in the brassica family along with cabbage, broccoli. Considered a southern cole crop, this hardy green can be grown  almost anywhere. Planting time is late summer and early fall for winter harvest. Plant in moist well drained soil, 1/2 inch deep, spacing seeds several inches apart, thin seedlings to 3 feet apart, as this plant will need room to spread out. Use the thinned plants for a fresh salad or cook as greens. Pest problems are aphids, usually show up under the leaves and look like mold to me I spray them with dish soap and water about 1 tablespoon dawn to 1 gallon water in my sprayer. The other pest seen here is the cabbage looper and they chew holes in the leaves. A good search and squish works for that.  The days to germination are 5 to 10 with approx. 85 days to harvest. Pick leaves from the bottom up the stalk. When the leaves lay on the soil they tend to get buggie. The collard is a cold weather frost resistant plant and get more flavor after some frost. Feed them a foliage leaf spray of seaweed extract about 2 to 3 times and they will just keep on growing.

 

Collard Greens

Collard Greens

 

Another perennial this plant was often called the poor mans crop, but it has a long and distinguished history. It is one of the oldest in the cabbage family.  Everyone has a favored way to cook collard greens , just ask and you will get many recipes for this delicious dish. Full of vitamins and high in vitamin c it is all good!  So today I planted a large bed of collards along with some mustard green and I can’t hardly wait for a hot steaming bowl of collards and a slice of corn bread. And if that is poor man’s food I will have another helping please. Sometimes the simplicity of the everyday things around us blesses us with comfort and just good  food! I hope you are planting some collards, it will make you smile.

 

Growing green with Jannie and happy to be in the outdoors.