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If you have in your garden Grow leeks, you can grow this grateful and healthy vegetable (even as a "Leeks" known) enjoy even in winter. For this you should start Sowing, Cultivation and Plants of the young plantlets in the (greenhouse) house or in the garden start in time. Otherwise the Cultivation quite easy to care for. From the end August you can harvest – until the first frost in winter.
Growing leeks: Sowing and Growing
Already in February/March can the leek sown in pots or boxes Be; however, it requires a germination temperature of at least 15°C and should therefore be pre-pulled either under foil or in the (greenhouse) house.
Are the so bred Plant about 5 cm large, however, they should already in the open so that they can harden off. After that you can plant them outdoors.
From April can also be direct seeding in the open are made.
Regardless of where the young leek plants were pre-bred: before they get to their final location, their soil with humus or compost have been prepared.
The latest time for a Planting is July; after that, the plants do not have enough time to thrive until the onset of winter.
Planting and transplanting leeks: Instructions
- If the plants have a height of about 15 cm reached, they can be transplanted, namely in trenches, which should be about 15 cm deep.
- The Roots of the leeks are cut to one centimeter, the green leaves shortened by about a third.
- When planting the leek plant, it is important to make sure that the Do not soil over the new leaves gets!
- Between the individual plants should be a Minimum distance of 10 cm must be respected; between the rows of 30 cm.
- important is to plant the Soil always beautiful moist to keep (no waterlogging!).
Gardenbista Tip: If you want to avoid sowing, you can buy ready-made leek bulbs in specialized stores and plant them directly!
Soil and fertilizing
The leek appreciates a nutrient-rich or humus-rich soil very much. If you grow leeks, you should always give them a good twice in summer a dose of fertilizer (preferably plant liquid manure); in autumn and winter, however, fertilizing is completely discontinued.
Because of its strong aroma, leeks are not tempting to most pests.
The Leek moth on the other hand, this smell does not matter: it lays its eggs on the leaves; the caterpillars gradually eat them through the leek, which then begins to rot and is no longer edible.
Also the Onion fly is attracted to leeks: it lays its eggs near the roots. The maggots also eat their way through the leek to its heart. The leaves of the affected plant turn yellow and it dies.
Both pests can be treated by a Mixed culture with carrots can be counteracted. Also once Stretching nets above the leek bed is effective.
The good thing about leek plants is that they are quite immune to diseases.
The Leek rust however, a fungal disease, poses a serious threat to leeks. This fungus can be recognized by reddish-yellow pustules on the outer leaves of the plant, which must therefore be removed (please do not dispose of them in the compost)!). If the fungus continues to appear, the entire plant may need to be discarded. The same applies to an infestation with powdery mildew, which can also occasionally occur on leeks.
Harvesting and storing leeks
If you were successful in growing leeks, you will be rewarded with the harvest. But when can leeks be harvested? From the end of August actually at any time, as long as it is frost-free The leeks must be stored in a cool place throughout the winter and into March/April of the following year.
Why only on frost-free days? Unfortunately, if the leeks are too frozen, damage to the stems can occur during thawing – but health aspects do not argue against harvesting in frosty weather. leeks, which spend the winter outdoors, form small Pearl onions on the roots, which are edible (tasty!) are.
Only when on the leeks Flowers it is no longer edible.
Before harvesting, the soil should be loosened slightly – this makes it much easier to pull the leeks out of the ground.
Garden bista tip: The leeks can also be cut off near the ground – smaller leeks will grow back, which are also edible.
In principle, there is no particular reason to store leeks; after all, they are a winter vegetable that can be harvested fresh for about nine months a year.
Who nevertheless Store leeks has two different options:
- Freeze (cut raw leeks into pieces)
- Store in the basement (in a box filled with damp sand)
It is not advisable to boil down leeks, as they lose both their taste and their crunchiness.
Although leek hardy it does not necessarily have to be exposed to the iciest temperatures. A cover of fleece or – even better – brushwood is therefore recommended.
Gartenbista tip: Leeks grow all year round as long as it is frost free. Even after winter, this is the case…