Harvest chard and spinach
If you fancy a break from cabbages and Brussels sprouts, then let these two leaves step up. robust, vigorous and trouble-free, they stand to attention on the plot right through the colder months to give pickings at a time when other produce is scarce.
I sowed this bed of spinach and ‘ruby’ Swiss chard back in august, knowing they plants would reach a good size by early October.
after this point growth pretty much slows to a halt but, with both crops being fully hardy, they happily sit tight till april. as the spring warms these crops start to develop flower spikes (known as ‘bolting’). It’s at that point when the rows then get pulled up for the compost heap – but in the meantime they’ve given me harvests from September till april.
Having noticed that the ‘ruby’ chard is suffering from powdery mildew, I’ve found a resistant variety called ‘fantasy’ that I’ll grow next year. The spinach variety I sow is ‘Perpetual’ which is incredibly robust. You can also sow annual spinach, which is hardy but lower-yielding.
They will give good pickings when other produce is scarce
Swiss chard ‘Fantasy’