Kitchen Garden Seeds

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Endive - Frisee

This ancient family includes popular "continental" greens, most preferring cool weather and evenly moist soil. You may sow in the spring as soon as the soil can be worked, when the soil is about 45F degrees. However, late summer sowing for fall and winter harvest may be more successful. Wild at heart, most Chicories prefer to be direct-sown in moderately fertile soil; too much added fertilizer, especially nitrogen, can cause them to bolt. With all varieties, keep soil lightly moist until seedlings emerge. Chicories have varying degrees of bitter flavor and their dense texture adds desirable dimension to salads.To broaden the range of texture and flavor in your garden and salads, don t forget to plant some of these specialty Salad Greens: Arugula, Asian Greens, Chervil, Claytonia, Cress, Dandelion Greens, Endive, Escarole, Frisee, Giant Red Mustard, Komatsuna, Lettuce, Mache, Mibuna, Minutina, Mizuna, Orach, Radicchio, Salad Blends, Sorrel, Spinach, Swiss Chard, and Tatsoi. Deer resistant.

Average seed life: 2 years.

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Gardening Tips

Gardening Tips: Blanching Chicory
In European winter markets, huge heads of Escarole and Endive (Tres Fine) are displayed with centers as blond and wild as Harpo's wig. The growers blanch the hearts by outfitting them with little hats (like upside-down Tupperware bowls) just a week prior to harvest. It is quite a comical sight to see these hatted fields. Since both of the varieties listed here are mild, self-blanching types, you can grow them bareheaded, but it is still fun to try this technique. You'll have creamy heads that are especially mild, crispy and tasty.

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