Dive into the salad season
Spring is officially here. And while I do enjoy winter and I love hearty winter soups and casseroles, I’m really looking forward to some lighter meals now that salad season is right around the corner.
Now is the time to plant some leafy vegetables. Stagger planting of different varieties through to summer.
Endive is tasty and versatile, super quick and easy to grow. Endive is a curly leafed lettuce with slightly bitter leaves. And there’s frisee, a similar milder variety with fine lacy leaves.
Endive doesn’t grow with a heart, so you can pick as it grows. The leaves in the centre of endive are sweeter and more delicate.
Plant your seedlings in a well-drained spot 5cm apart from each other. Now all there is to do is watch out for snails and slugs, and keep it watered. If you let it dry out it will taste bitter and also go to seed faster. In four to six weeks you’ll be cutting leaves for your salads. Harvest the leaves from several plants at once. That way you encourage new growth. This is a great job for children.
■ Awapuni Nurseries, www.awapuni.co.nz