Kale

CROP INFORMATION:

Crop name: Kale

Scientific name: Brassica oleracea

Family name: Brassicaceae

Cultivar groups: Acephala group

Warm season or cool season: Cool season

PLANTING INFORMATION:

Space between plants/between rows: Sow ¼ to ½ inches deeps, 1 inch apart in rows 18 to 30 inches apart.  Thin to 12-16 inch spacings.

Fertility Requirements: Well-drained soil high in organic matter.  pH 6.0 to 7.5

Watering Needs: Prefers consistent moisture but can tolerate drought (although quality & flavor will be worse)

Number of days from seed to transplant and/or seed to harvest: Kale will be ready for harvest 55 days from transplanting, 70 to 80 days from seed (depending on the variety

Planting Instructions:

  • Direct seed about 3 months before expected fall frost.  Sow ¼ to ½ inches deeps, 1 inch apart in rows 18 to 30 inches apart.  Thin to 12-16 inch spacings.
  • Transplant (mid-October, unheated tunnel): 12 inches between plants, 2 rows per bed

 

PEST/DISEASE INFORMATION:

Potential Pests:

  • Cutworm
  • Cabbage loopers
  • Cabbage worms
  • Flea beetles
  • Cabbage root maggots
  • Cabbage aphids
  • Slugs/snails
  • Nematodes

Plant Pathogens:

  • Clubroot
  • Black rot
  • Black leg
  • Alternaria

 

HARVEST & STORAGE INFORMATION:

Flavor can improve with frost.  Late May, early June harvesting.  Harvest about 2 months after planting, multiple harvests possible.  Cut entire individual leaves off with harvesting tool.  Store at 32 degrees F for 10-14 days.

When Ready to Harvest: Harvest about 2 months after planting, multiple harvests possible.  Flavor can improve with frost.

How to Harvest: Cut entire individual leaves off with harvesting tool.  Harvest the older, larger leaves with the stem (close to the base of the plant) otherwise you could stunt the plants growth for additional harvests.  Avoid harvesting the terminal bud.

Optimal Time of Day to Harvest: During the coolest part of the day (shade harvested crop from direct sunlight as much as possible); wash with spray washers

Best Method to Cool Crop: Vacuum cooling or hydrocooling

Optimal Storage Temperature and Relative Humidity: Optimum storage is 32°F and a high relative humidity of at least 95% (will help prevent wilting)

Possible Storage Life: At optimal storage, 10-14 days. Kale packed in polyethylene-lined crates and protected by crushed ice keeps in excellent condition for 3 weeks at 32°F.

Common Post-Harvest Losses/Problems: Wilting, bruise damage, leaf punctures.  Don’t ship with ripening tomatoes, cantaloupes or peaches because they are ethylene sensitive.

Average Yields: Average yield expected/ft2 = 0.33-0.67 lb

Farm to YouNH Crop Data:

Year Crop Variety Date Planted Date Harvested Days to Harvest Total Yield (lbs) Yield (lbs/sq. ft)
2017 Cucumber Diva 7/12/17 9/11/2017 58 120 1.2
2017 Cucumber Lemon 7/12/17 9/5/2017 65 0.75 0.0075

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s