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How to Plant Kale in a Greenhouse in Indiana

Want to know how to plant kale in a greenhouse in Indiana? Kale is a cold-loving plant that’s best grown in cooler areas like Indiana. The cool weather plays a part in growing healthy and delicious kale as it brings out the nutty flavor and the sweetness of your leafy greens.

How to Plant Kale in a Greenhouse in Indiana

The Best Time to Plant Kale in Indiana

The key to growing delicious fruits and vegetables is knowing the best time to plant them. Taking note of the first and last frost dates will let you know when to start planting your kale. Indiana is located in the 5 and 6 USDA plant hardiness zone. Here’s the best time to plant kale in Indiana:

 

Zone 5

Start kale seeds indoors in early April and harvest by the end of June; OR start kale seeds mid-July and harvest by the end of October.

 

Zone 6

Start kale seeds indoors mid-March and harvest by mid-June; OR start kale seeds indoors early August and harvest by mid-November.

 

How to Plant Kale in Indiana

Planting kale in Indiana doesn’t have to be difficult. To give you a clear snapshot of how to do it, check out this guide:

Sowing kale seeds or setting plants

Sow the seeds half an inch into light, airy, well-drained soil. Once it grows into seedlings (usually after two weeks), thin the seedlings so your plants are at least eight inches apart.

If you’re starting with plants, as most people do, plant them into your garden at the depth similar to how they’re growing in their pots. Space them at least 18 inches apart. After planting your seeds or plants, make sure to water them well.

 

Growing kale

Water and feed your kale plants regularly with continuous-release plant food. If it doesn’t rain much in your area, provide an inch or an inch and a half of water per week.

Keep in mind that kale won’t grow well in hot weather, so make sure to mulch the soil. Mulching also helps in preventing weeds from forming. After the first hard freeze, don’t forget to mulch the soil again. Your kale plants may continue to produce leaves even after winter.

 

Harvesting kale

Kale will be ready for harvesting if the leaves are as big as the size of your hand. Pick a handful of kale leaves per harvest and start by getting the oldest leaves located at the lowest part of the plant. Throw away torn and yellowed leaves.

Don’t pick the terminal bud located at the top center of your kale plant because this part keeps your kale productive. Kale plants continue to grow even when temperatures drop to 20 degrees F, and it’ll taste sweeter if hit by frost. If you want to extend your growing season or harvest, protect your plants from the cold by placing them inside a mini greenhouse.

 

Storing kale

Storing kale is similar to storing other leafy greens. You can place kale in a produce bag (but don’t stuff them inside!) and store in in the fridge. Consume within a week before it starts to wilt.

 

Reasons Why It’s Best to Grow Kale in a Mini Greenhouse

If you’re initially planning to plant your kale directly in your garden, think again. Since you can control the temperature inside a greenhouse, growing kale in a mini greenhouse lets you enjoy kale throughout the year, even if the weather is hot outside!

Aside from that, here are other reasons why you should grow kale in a greenhouse:

 

Protect your plants from harmful pests

Cabbageworms, cabbage aphids, flea beetles, rodents, raccoons, and other insects and animals love to eat your kale. Keeping them inside a greenhouse protects them from these annoying critters. It also shields them from any infectious diseases from neighboring plants.

 

Keep them safe from unpredictable weather conditions

Excessive heat, heavy rains, storms, and strong winds can easily damage your plants. Placing them inside a greenhouse makes it easier to grow kale and other vegetables in unpredictable weather conditions, like Indiana. Indiana residents experience severe fluctuations in temperature, along with random arrival of rain and other weather conditions, so having a greenhouse comes in handy.

 

Perfect for gardeners with limited space

Kale needs space to grow, so if you don’t have enough space, you can consider getting a mini greenhouse. The standard size of a “small” greenhouse is around 6 feet, but there are smaller alternatives as well. You can place a mini greenhouse on balconies, patios, decks, and even on tabletops. Even if it’s smaller in size, you’ll enjoy the same benefits as a regular-sized greenhouse.

 

Ideal for beginners in greenhouse technology

Mini greenhouses are an ideal solution for gardeners who want to learn more about greenhouse gardening. Investing in a larger, more permanent greenhouse is expensive. It’s best to learn how a greenhouse works and how well plants thrive inside before upgrading to a large greenhouse. A mini greenhouse allows you to do all that without at a cheaper price.

 

Final Thoughts on How to Plant Kale in a Greenhouse in Indiana

Now that you know how to plant kale in a greenhouse in Indiana, the next thing you need to do is to get started. Growing kale is easier in a mini greenhouse, so make sure to consider getting one for your gardening needs.

 

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How to Harvest Marigold Flowers and Seeds: Tools And Tips

How to Harvest Marigold Flowers and Seeds: Tools And Tips

Want to know how to harvest marigold flowers and seeds? Marigold flowers are a mainstay in most of the gardens. They bloom beautiful flowers all season long and they’re easy to grow from seed. Knowing how to save marigold seeds is essential if you want to continue growing them the next season.

Fortunately, harvesting marigold seeds are quite quick and easy. You only need to take the seeds from the flowers and let them air dry before storing them during the winter season. You can pack it up with a container or seed packets to save even more for the next growing season. Some of the marigold flowers are edible and best to mix in your salads to add a distinct flavor to it.

 

Tools You’ll Need to Harvest Marigold Flowers

The tools you’ll need to harvest marigold flowers include a basket or other available containers that can be used in harvesting flowers. You’ll also need some paper towels, a sharp knife, a pair of scissors, or gardening shears.

Since you need to evaluate or describe the process, get yourself some notes. Seed packets can be envelopes or closed-air containers excluding plastic containers and bags.

 

How to Harvest Marigold Flowers and Seeds

Here’s how you can harvest marigold plants for flower arrangements and bouquets:

 

Letting Marigold Flowers Dry

It’s important to wait until the right time to collect marigold seeds. You can harvest the seeds when the petals are dry already (when the base of each flower turning brownish). However, make sure there’s still is a bit of green color left in the base of the bloom. If you also wait until it is completely turned brown, it may start to rot or mold. It’s important to wait for the perfect time to harvest marigolds since the timing is crucial to have the right quality of marigold seeds.

Tip in harvesting: While you are harvesting, simply cut each marigold flower heads using your cutting equipment or either pinch it with your finger. However, be sure not to pull the flowers as it can harm the roots of your marigolds.

 

Opening the Marigold

Get your paper towel and set it on a flat surface. After, hold each bloom’s base, pull-off, and discard the petals and leaves of it. Then, you will easily notice the attached seeds inside the base. In the meantime, set the prepared blooms on your paper towels for bulk removal of seeds. You may also use larger towels to manage and accommodate the abundant blooms of your marigolds.

 

Removal of Marigold Seeds

Marigold seeds are likely to have a long, slender, and pointed appearance. Divided ends with black color and white color on the opposite edge. Gather your blooms, pull-off all petals, and leaves, and start pulling the seeds from the base. After getting all marigold seeds, discard the base in a single place like in bins or garbage bags. After sorting, put another paper towel on another flat surface and spread the pulled marigold seeds on it.

 

Drying of Seeds

As mentioned above, let your marigold seeds air dry for about a week in an uncovered paper towel. It will enable them to be preserved even in frost season and will prevent it from getting rot and mold.

 

Seed Storing

After drying the seeds, gather them and start placing them inside your seed packets to prolong their lifespan and will still be used after the frost date. Do not use plastic bags in storing your marigold seeds because it will retain residual moisture, which will affect your marigold seeds and even get rot and mold. To avoid forgetting about your marigold seeds, put a label on it to prevent possible disposal if unlabeled.

 

Using Stored Seeds for Replanting

After storing your collected marigold seeds, it is perfect to plant during the growing season. You can enjoy once again the benefits of it from house beautification to an edible ingredient for your salad.

 

Facts about Marigold Flowers

Marigolds are especially good for repelling insects and pests, making them companion plant for tomatoes, eggplants, tomatoes, and chili pepper because of its pungent scent of some variety. It is amazing having this kind of flow in your plant, imagine you don’t only have a beautiful attractive garden but having also a very natural insect and pest repellent that will protect your plants from any abrogation.

African marigolds have larger flower heads on plants that grow from 10 to 36 inches tall. While French marigolds are smaller and bushier, having only two inches of flower head across on plants and only having six to eighteen inches height. Sizes and colors vary on its classification, having a mixed combination is pretty great, will also add more pleasant and abundant color to your garden.

 

The Benefits of Growing Marigolds in a Greenhouse

Have you ever thought of growing your marigolds in a greenhouse? If you haven’t, it’s time to consider getting a greenhouse.

Greenhouses are great for keeping your marigolds safe from pests and diseases. Marigolds are susceptible to insects and blight, such as caterpillars, aphids, leaf spots, and mildews. You can lower the risk of plant damage by growing your marigolds in a greenhouse.

Additionally, greenhouses can also keep your plants safe from bad weather that could easily damage your flowers.

 

Final Thoughts on How to Harvest Marigold Flowers and Seeds

Knowing how to harvest marigold flowers and seeds is crucial if you’re planning to plant them in your garden. These beautiful flowers that usually come in yellow and orange colors are a great addition to any garden or flower arrangement.

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