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Brassica oleracea Acephala group


Kale is an excellent green vegetable for cold-weather cooking. It's best known as an attractive garnish, but the mild-flavor greens are also a highly nutritious addition to salads, stir-fries, steamed vegetable dishes, soups, and stews. Unlike so many other greens, they keep much of their shape even when cooked, adding texture to any dish.

Leaves may be blue-green, green, or burgundy in color, and ruffled, curly, deeply cut, or flat in form. Color and flavor improve with cool weather; plants can survive to 0 degrees F with protection.

Sun,Part Sun
Plant Type:
Plant Height:
12-24 inches tall
Plant Width:
12-36 inches wide
Top Varieties

Brassica oleracea 'Chidori Red' bears frilly leaves that provide brilliant color and sweet flavor. Dark outer leaves surround purplish-red central foliage.
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Brassica oleracea 'Dwarf Blue Curled Vates' offers finely curled bluish-green leaves on low-growing, compact plants. It's a highly ornamental addition to the vegetable garden.
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Brassica oleracea 'Redbor' features attractive frilly burgundy leaves that intensify in color as the weather gets colder.
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Brassica oleracea 'Red Russian' has purple stems and purple-veined flat leaves that are more tender than those of frilly kale varieties.
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bears long, thin dark green puckered leaves that stand upright. The plant tolerates heat and cold well.
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Harvest Tips
Pick baby greens 20-30 days after seeding. Harvest mature leaves 30-40 days later. To keep a plant producing, harvest the outer leaves and allow the center to continue to grow. The tender central leaves are best for salads. Cook the larger, older leaves. Leaves will have their best flavor when growing conditions are cool and frosty.