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Vegetables
Swiss Chard

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A Beet family relative, Swiss Chard is easy to grow, delicious and beautiful. It fits in everywhere: the kitchen garden, ornamental beds and containers. Direct-sow seed after the threat of frost has passed, when the soil has warmed up to about 50°F. For baby greens, sow 2″ apart in rows spaced 12″ apart and harvested when 2″ to 3″ tall. For mature, full-size Chard, thin seedlings to 10″ apart in rows spaced 16″ to 20″ apart. To harvest, cut off the outer leaves of these grand plants which keep on producing, even through a light frost. Water Swiss Chard regularly in dry periods to help keep the stems from becoming woody. Baby leaves may harvested through the season in the ‘cut and come again’ method for fresh salads as well as cooked as one would in Spinach recipes. Generally, about a month later, mature leaves may be stripped from their stems and chiffonaded for pasta sauces, hearty soups and stews. We like Swiss Chard added to slow sautéed diced pancetta in garlic-flavored olive oil, braised in chicken broth, and sprinkled with toasted pine nuts and grated Pecorino. For that matter, Swiss Chard is a good mate for any sort of pork, ricotta-based pasta filling, custard-based frittata or cheesy rice gratin. Wilted Swiss Chard is heavenly braised with golden raisons and finished with a bit of heavy cream and butter. (What isn’t?) Mature stems may be used for dips and piped soft cheese spreads.

Average seed life: 2 years

     
#1800 Argentata Swiss Chard: 60 days
This heirloom chard, also known as Bionda á Costa, is particularly revered by Italian cooks. Argentata produces extraordinarily large, deep green savoyed leaves, sturdy and easily handled. The luminous, silvery-white stems on the Argentata lends a fairy tale ambience to the kitchen garden, growing up to 3’ if grown in soil amended with lots of organic matter. As baby greens, Argentata adds a silvery sparkle to salads. (OP.)

Packet of 200 Seeds / $3.25

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#1802 Lucullus Swiss Chard: 52 days
We just can’t get enough of Swiss Chard’s earthy goodness and beauty. Productive from spring through fall, this prized heirloom has 20″-tall ivory stems and huge grass-green leaves with a delicate taste and texture. (OP.)

Packet of 200 Seeds / $3.25

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#1805 Peppermint Chard: 58-62 days
This flashy chard deserves center stage in edible or ornamental beds. Its white stems have a hot pink blush and long bright fuchsia stripes in contrast to its shiny, heavily savoyed, foot-wide leaves accented with white midribs. (OP.)

Packet of 200 Seeds / $3.75

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#1810 Perpetual Spinach Chard: 50-60 days
It is not Spinach nor is it perpetual. There, we said it. This biennial, heirloom chard relative grows well in most soils with good bolt resistance. Prominent white midveins intersect huge shiny green leaves that taste like tender, young chard. Harvest the bottom leaves regularly to keep it productive. (OP.)

Packet of 150 Seeds / $3.25

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#1815 Orange Chiffon Swiss Chard: 30-60 days
A beautiful, uniformly-colored newcomer, Orange Chiffon has emerald-green leaves and glowing tangerine-orange midribs and stems. Standing at a mature 24" tall, it does double duty as a lush ornamental edible although we prefer to harvest it as a baby leaf, particularly during hot, dry spells in the dog days of summer. Orange Chiffon was a hands-down favorite by all of our test gardeners! (OP.)

Packet of 175 Seeds / $3.35

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#1820 Bright Lights Swiss Chard: 50-62 days
This ‘rainbow’ chard is dazzling in the garden and we have an Aussie seed company to thank for saving this exceptional variety from extinction. Pink, red, bright gold, pale orange, white and mauve stems are radiant beneath green or bronze-green leaves. Bright Lights may be grown for baby greens harvest, but for maximum color in stems and leaf veins, allow plants to mature to at least 8”. Harvest the large outer leaves with a sharp blade, or ‘top’ the plant - leave a few inches of stem and it will re-sprout if the weather isn’t too hot. Bright Lights grows to 18” to 24” high. (OP.)

Packet of 150 Seeds / $3.25

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#1822 The Kaleidoscopic Swiss Chard Blend: 50-60 days
Last year, we planted every Swiss Chard imaginable. In the fall, the magical late afternoon sun illuminated the many colored leaves, creating fluorescent neon stems like a vegetable version of Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. Our exclusive blend of the world’s most colorful chard includes green-stemmed Lucullus, pink-striped Peppermint, sunny-yellow Golden Sunrise, hot pink Magenta Sunset, red Classic Rhubarb and brilliant Orange Chiffon. Perfect for small space gardens, it yields six months of delicious beauty. (OP.)

Packet of 200 Seeds / $3.25

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#1825 Magenta Sunset Swiss Chard: 25-30 days
A beauty queen of a Chard, Magenta Sunset has crinkly, iridescent, dark jade leaves with hot pink to magenta stems, midribs and veins. Perfect for scissor harvest as baby leaves, it has a mild earthy flavor that is lovely in salads. It may also be grown into full-sized, 24” tall beauties so that you may take advantage of its opulent ornamental stature. Somewhat heat-tolerant, it should be grown for baby leaf harvest during the high heat of summer. Slight variability in the stock may produce some solid green plants. (OP)

Packet of 175 Seeds / $3.35

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#1840 Golden Sunrise Yellow Swiss Chard: 55-60 days
This classic, yellow Swiss Chard has deep golden stalks, midribs and veins and shiny, jade-green, slightly crumpled leaves. Apart from the rainbow hues of Bright Lights, the warm, sunny tones of Golden Sunrise are quite unique. Growing 16” to 24” tall, Golden Sunrise is quite frost tolerant and wonderfully flavorful. You may add rich, glowing Golden Sunrise to salads as baby leaves in 28 days or may wait for full-sized, rich golden bunches at maturity. (OP.)

Packet of 175 Seeds / $3.25

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#1845 Classic Rhubarb Swiss Chard: 50-55 days
Featured in classic French gardens like Villandry, this traditional red heirloom has uniform garnet-red stalks with abundant deep green, crumpled leaves veined crimson-red. Growing from 18” to 24” tall, Classic Rhubarb is juicy, tasty and extremely productive~it will yield up to three or more cuttings of pretty baby leaves. (OP.)

Packet of 175 Seeds / $3.15

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