How can I grow leeks with longer white stalks? Mine are healthy but almost all green, not so useful for cooking, other than stock
When planting I use an old spade handle sharpened to almost a point, a dibber, and make holes about 8" deep. Poor water in whilst the dibber is in the soil and slowly remove, let the hole dry a bit and drop the leeks in. Then fill with water. The holes will eventually fill with soil, but whatever grows beneath the soil will stay blanched / white.
I suppose you could mound, earth up around them if you don't plant deeply, but you'll get a lot of soil inside the leeks.
I actually like the green on leeks when it is young, I cut it off as they are growing and stir fry it, or add it to veg recipes.
I conversely make a hole with the dibber, drop the plant in, then water the whole row of planted leeks, washing the soil in.
Green is fine for cooking and eating… and more colourful too…
I do the same as Welshonion. The section blanched white is a lot more more tender than the green part but it's all good to eat, whatever the colour! Commercial soup makers use all of the leek for instance, but it is of course chopped into very small pieces so the coarseness of the top part of the oldest leaves isn't really noticed.
It all depends on how big a leek stem you want. Dibber and hole method produces a reasonable length, but Dibber, hole and cardboard tube produces a huge length of Leek, if that is what you want.
I grew mine from seed and used tall yogurt pots to grow them in. When they reached about 8" I transplanted them. Seemed to work well. Good luck.
but Dibber, hole and cardboard tube produces a huge length of Leek, if that is what you want.
How / where does the cardboard tube go and when? Are you referring to loo roll centres?
Sorry, was in a hurry.
Plant the leeks in a hole as described above. Then as the stem elongates out of the soil wrap cardboard round the stem and pile earth round it. That way you get the length of stem below ground and in the cardboard to be blanched and reasonably soil free.
OR. Plant the leeks as you would any plant and put a cardboard tube round and earth up. Keep adding cardboard tubes as the plant elongates until it is as long as you want it to be.
Not that easy to describe in words. Bet there is a Video of doing in somewhere on the Interweb thingy.
Interested in that Berghill will give it at try. Thanks
I put the seeds in toilet roll holders and plant the lot in the soil and so far they produce an excellent crop , I do protect them when small , seed germination is 100 percent in the greenhouse , then hard them off
keep it simple , I say