First harvest of the year-Chives

Chives are a member of the onion family and give a mild, oniony flavour to soups, stews, potato salads, vegan soft cheeses etc.

One of the great things about growing chives is that you can harvest them three or four times a year and already our patch of chives has provided us with a bounty.  The other great thing is that they are perennial - they come up year after year and require very little, if any attention once established.  You don't need much space for them either - in fact you can grow them on a pot on your kitchen windersill.  They flower in May and their pretty purple flowers look good in salads.

If you are growing chives from seeds in your garden choose a spot that is sunny.  They need to be kept moist but the spot should be well drained.  Enrich the area with organic compost at a depth of about 8 inches. Plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep and about 4 inches apart. Planting at this time of year, you should get your first harvest in around 60 days.  Keep the soil moist and when the flowers do appear you might want to remove them unless you want a chive garden!!

If you are growing chives on your kitchen windowsill plant them in an organic potting compost that has been premoistened.  Fill your pot to within a couple of inches or so of the top, sprinkle with the seeds and cover so that the seeds are at 1/4 inch depth.  They should germinate within 2 weeks.  Fertilise with a natural fertiliser such as seaweed.  

Look out for a Meatless Monday using chives in a couple of weeks!

No comments:

Post a Comment