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Swiss Chard has grown in popularity over the last few years as its leaves are highly nutritious, making it a great addition to healthy diets. It is a great source of vitamins A, K and C, plus many other important vitamins and minerals. Though the leaves are a lush dark green, the stems of chard come in a rainbow of different colors including green, yellow, white and red.
We like planting the ‘Rainbow Mix’ in order to get a variety of colors all at once. Swiss Chard is sometimes referred to as ‘perpetual spinach’, though it is actually very closely related to the beet.
Grow Swiss Chard in a medium to large size container with a diameter of at least 8″. Plant seeds any time from early spring to mid August. Space seeds 10-30 cm (4″-12″) apart, and cover with 1 cm (1/2″) of soil. Seeds should sprout in 7-14 days.
Alternatively, many nurseries and garden supply shops have small starter plants available so you can plant them right out in the garden.
To eliminate the guesswork in selecting the right size containers for your plants, we’ve put together a list of commonly grown herbs, veggies, fruit and flowers along with the minimum pot sizes required by each.
Starting a container garden? Grab my free guide on choosing the best sized pots for each veggie, fruit, and herb in your container garden – Veggie Garden Potting Guide
Watering Swiss Chard
Keep well and consistently watered. Water when the top 1″ of soil is dry to the touch.
Fertilize two times in the summer months with a liquid all purpose fertilizer to give it a boost.
Where Can I Grow It?
Grow Swiss chard outdoors, preferably in full sun, but it will also grow well in part shade during the hot summer months.
Swiss Chard Growing Tips
You can start harvesting when the plants reach 6″- 8″ in height. Harvest by cutting off the outer leaves 1.5″ above the ground with a sharp knife. The chard plant will continue to grow new leaves.
Chard leaves can be harvested while they are young and tender or later when they have fully matured. Young leaves are typically used raw in salads, while mature leaves are cooked or sauteed to eliminate their bitter taste. Cooked chard is similar in flavour to cooked spinach, though some say the flavor is more refined.
Grow Swiss chard along with anything in the Brassicas family such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cabbage for beneficial effects.