Tips for Salad Greens

Who doesn’t love a nice fresh salad? A good set of greens from your garden are a key base for all kinds of great meals! I have always found leafy greens to be a great addition to the garden, simpler than waiting for those tantalizing tomatoes to ripen and for the impatient you can always harvest early for “baby” greens.


Endive

A wonderful salad green it often has a delicate bitter taste.

If starting from seeds then sow in April for use during the summer, and agin in July, for later harvesting. Be sure to start your seeds in a warm, protected garden area or indoors. When the plants from seed are two or three inches high transplant to rich soil about ten inches apart.

When nearly full-grown you can gather the leaves together and tie them to exclude light from the central part of the bunch, this is blanching. This should be done when the plants are perfectly dry. If done when they are wet or moist the plants could rot.


Lettuce

There are a huge number of types that come in all shapes and sizes! The base of many a perfect summer salad.

You can grow lettuce directly from seed sown in the ground starting about the start of May, just be sure your soil is rich and the garden gets full sun.


Parsley

Parsley is a great herb and can make up a salad base all on it’s own!

You can generously sow these seeds in April, in rows of soil that is at least moderately rich. The seeds traditionally germinate pretty slowly, it can help to soak the seeds in warm water before sowing.


Spinach

Spinach is a fantastic green and makes up part of some super salad combinations.

To start from seed you can sow in early spring as long as your garden is turned over and enriched with a a good compost mix. Having the soil rich helps to force a tender, succulent growth. You can even sow for succession about a month apart and have is ready all throughout the season.


Wrap up

With all this in mind, think about what you want to build your homegrown salads out of! Also, along with these you can always mix in more herbs or a few of your favorite berries for a little color. Nothing can compare to a perfect light salad you grew all on your own!


References

Project Gutenberg’s ABC of Vegetable Gardening, by Eben Eugene Rexford