Plant and maintain chard

The chard is a tasty vegetable from the family of the foxtail family. The edible leaves and stems of various cultures can be harvested in summer and are therefore ideal as a spinach substitute. Thanks to its fast-growing shoots, the leaf mangold can even be harvested several times.

Fresh Swiss chard

Contents: Grow chard

  • Leaf mangold and stalk mangold - the two cultivated forms of chard
  • Properly grow and maintain chard
  • Harvest and prepare chard

Leaf mangold and stalk mangold - the two cultivated forms of chard

The vitamin-rich leafy vegetable is useful plant and ornamental plant at the same time. The large leaves of the chard grow on up to 30 cm long stems and show up in different colors.

A particularly colorful vegetable patch can be reached by planting different types of chard.

Both the soft leaves and the firmer leaf ribs are raw edible. But they can also easily be processed and served as a garden fresh side dish. The colorful chard leaves are cooked like spinach, the ribs like asparagus. Botanists differentiate here between the two forms of culture Journal Mangold and stemmed chard.

Swiss chard can be grown in a colorful variety.

Swiss chard plants in different varieties

Stem mangold is often referred to in Switzerland as Krautstiel and is also known by the term ribbed mangold. Characteristic are its large leaves with distinctive midribs. He has the culinary advantage that both the much thicker leaf ribs and the spicy leaves are edible. Hobby gardeners therefore prefer him at home cultivation in self-catering garden.

On the other hand, leaf mangold can be constantly harvested, as its smooth leaves quickly regrow after harvesting. Small and young leaves taste much sweeter. The leaf mangold is also often referred to as cut mangold and is ideal as an ornamental plant.

Especially suitable varieties for local cultivation:

  • As leaf and ribbed mangold forms the Lucullus broad leaves and stems and tastes particularly delicate.
  • The Walliser is a tall and broad-ribbed stalk mangold with a long harvest time.
  • Bright Lights is an exceptional variety of chard with different colored stems.
  • The stalk mangold Rhubarb Chard forms bright red stems and ribs.
  • The leaf mangold Erbetta It is processed very often in the kitchen and is conspicuously cold-tolerant.

Properly grow and maintain chard

Young chard plants are planted in series.

Swiss chard in the bed

If you want to give your chard a growth advantage over weeds, you should buy pre-cultivated seedlings. The location is ideally sunny to medium shade and sheltered from the wind. The nutrient-rich soil should be humus-rich and deeply loosened.

Very heavy or very light soils must be prepared in advance accordingly - for example, with organic fertilizer or compost.

As sowing date, the months of March and April have proved to be successful, as it is now only rarely late night frost and the chard can replace in July the not thriving in the summer spinach in the kitchen. Containerware can be planted all year round in the vegetable patch, the undemanding Swiss chard flourishes but also in Kübelhaltung on the balcony.
tip: The chard can easily overwinter under a foil cover and be harvested in early spring. Leaf mangold is much winter hardier than stalk mangold.

The mangold root comes about 3 cm deep into the humus soil.

Roots of the chard

The roots of the chard or the seedlings are planted in a planting distance of 30 cm in 2-3 cm deep rows, covered with the excavation again, slightly pressed and finally moistened. Between the rows of seeds you should keep a distance of up to 40 cm to achieve ideal plant growth.

tip: At a closer distance, the varieties of chard grow more leaves, at more distances significantly more robust ribs - so decide the planting distance also after pursued harvest target and personal taste.

If the young plants are clearly too close to each other, they must be separated after some time to prevent the formation of brittle and thin stalks with little taste. Similarly, if planting too closely, the risk of mildew can increase.

A moderate fertilization allows optimal nutrient supply and gets the chard therefore particularly well. If withered leaves are removed regularly, you will achieve very good crop yields. Since the chard varieties have a very high water requirement, you should not forget a daily watering in midsummer.

tip: Mangold thrives in mixed culture with legumes, radishes or carrots. Spinach, however, is unsuitable as an immediate neighbor plant.

Harvest and prepare chard

In the stalk mangold, both the colorful stems and the ribbed leaves are edible.

Colored Swiss Chard

The chard is a biennial crop, but can be harvested in the first year. The growth time of the fast-growing summer and autumn vegetables is on average 80-90 days.

In the second year, after a cold month, the chard finally forms flowers and new ball-like seeds, which are suitable for reproduction in the following years.

The harvest takes place from late summer to November and is particularly rich with a crop yield of up to 3 kg per m². With the style mangold, cut the entire stem down with a small kitchen knife. For some varieties, the broad mangold stalks can also be easily turned off.

When leaf mangold, just harvest the big leaves. These can be removed with little effort. Make sure that the heart stops - so the spicy leaves can regrow quickly. Pluck mainly young and tender leaves, these taste finer and serve as an ideal spinach substitute in summer.

Chard is eaten raw or processed for other foods.

Swiss chard is prepared

Danger: Kidney patients should refrain from excessive consumption of chard leaves, as they have a high oxalic acid content.

The mangold root is not edible despite its high sugar content. The chard leaves and chard stalks, on the other hand, are particularly rich in vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin E and are particularly suitable for fresh consumption as a crisp salad.

If the leafy vegetables are processed, you should pay attention to short cooking times in order to preserve the healthy ingredients. Ideally, chard is only steamed or gently fried on all sides and served as a warm side dish. Also on a vegetarian quiche Magold tastes very good in combination with fresh garden herbs and sour cream.

The chard leaves can even be easily frozen, cut into small pieces and blanched for a short time.
tip: Place cut mangold stalks in a vase for short term storage. So they stay fresh and crisp longer.

Video Board: How to Grow Swiss Chard in Abundance