I planted this six Italian Lacinato kale plants last year and they grew into incredible kale trees, providing me kale all year long. I was surprised how long the growing season of these plants were and they seemed to get even stronger during the winter months. I left two of my best plants up to save seed. It took forever for the seeds to finally dry out but this week I went into the yard and I noticed that some of the pods were dry enough to harvest! I was contemplating just tearing out the plants because they were falling over into my other garden bed but I am glad I waiting because now I have hundreds (probably thousands) of seed. Also these were my two healthiest and strongest plants. They even combated an infestation of aphids at one point.
A few dates:
Kale from seed: February 13, 2013
Kale sprouted: February 17, 2014
Kale transplanted outside: March 16, 2014
Kale harvest dates: May 2013-February 2014
Dates for seeds to form and dry: February 2014-May 2014
When saving small seeds like kale it is best to work in a box or a bag in order to catch the seeds. When fully dry the seed pods can spring open spraying seeds in all directions. Releasing the seeds from their pods is deeply therapeutic work! It reminds me of my childhood when I would search my father’s garden for poppy seeds ready to burst open. Such simple childhood entertainment!