Kale and Swiss Chard are great first time greens to grow with your kids. They come in different shapes and sizes and can be grown in the ground or in containers. They do need a little more attention than some other greens, but the effort is worth it. These plants can be planted first in the spring and last in the summer. They thrive in cool weather and even taste better after a little frost, but will also do fine throughout the summer in your garden. Eat them raw or steamed, make the into soup or smoothies, the possibilities are endless. These plants are easy to grow from seed and can be started indoors in peat pots in late winter and put out as early as 4 weeks before the last frost in spring. They are susceptible to insect damage expecially caterpillars (Cabbage worm) so some protection is needed throughout the growing season. While the small white butterflies may look pretty, their caterpillars can decimate the crop.
Try This Recipe:
- Kale/Swiss Chard roughly chopped (they shrink when cooking)
- 1 small carrot shredded
- 1 sweet or red onion sliced thinly
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 TBS butter or olive oil
- 3 tsp lemon juice/apple cider vinegar
- Salt & Pepper
Saute carrots, onions and garlic in olive oil or butter over medium heat, stirring frequently till tender about 2 mins. Then add the greens and continue to stir occasionally until they are bright green and just tender. Swiss chard takes 3-5 minutes; kale about 5-8 minutes. Add the lemon juice or vinegar. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve hot.