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Tip: How We Get the Most from Our Salad Greens

November 5, 2012

Most vegetable gardeners are not aware that they can extend their harvest by the way they pick.  Rather than waiting to harvest the entire lettuce, spinach or other leafy green plant at one time (like we see these plants in our store’s grocery section); we cut individual older leaves each night for our salad.  The more we cut, the more the plant produces new growth from the center.  This way we are able to extend our harvest and maximize our yield.  Cut off any flowers that your plant produces to also extend growth.

We harvest individual Buttercrunch Lettuce leaves and the plant produces more.

The more Spinach leaves we cut, the more we get

You can see where we have cut Collard leaves and left the plant to grow more

We harvest individual kale leaves and we get more growth

We also cut individual Arugula leaves to extend our harvest

By the way, this is also true for your peas, beans, cucumbers, squash and many other veggies.  Pick smaller fruits frequently and you force your plants to produce more fruit trying to meet the objective of producing seed to grow future plants.  You reduce your yield when you allow your fruit to get too big.  This means the plant thinks the job is done because it has produced ripe seed.

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