How to Space Kale Plants in Your Home Garden

Are you looking for versatile vegetables for salads, smoothies, stir, or fries? Then, look no further than the Kale vegetable. I use Kale so much in my meals because they add a nice taste. However, to get the best from your Kale, you must know how to space them properly. 

One of the advantages of properly spacing your garden is that it allows you enough space to walk when it is time to harvest your plants. Another advantage of proper spacing is the impact it has on your yield and results. With the right spacing, you can be sure you will have a bumper harvest. 

How Far Apart to Space Kale Plants 

Kale Plants

Harvesting huge leaves from full-sized plants can allow you to receive more products from each one if you want to use your Kale for stir-fries rather than salads.

Rows, raised beds, and containers all share similar spacing for full-sized Kale, but there are a few minor exceptions. Let’s discuss them in the next paragraph. 

You may prefer to plant your seeds in raised beds. And just like me, you may use some square-foot gardening to guide your layout. I also use square-foot gardening when I plant and space my cucumber.

If you are spacing your Kale on a raised bed, your spacing should be 12 by 12 inches because that is the conventional square-foot planting recommendation for Kale. Each transplant should be placed in the middle of a grid square.

Put several seeds in the square’s middle if you’re starting with seeds rather than transplants. Cut the weaker seedlings off just above the soil when they are 4-5 inches tall, leaving only the strongest ones to grow. This is called thinning. 

You can grow Kale in a container. I consider containers to be scaled-down versions of a raised bed. When growing your Kale in a container, you need to consider that the soil dries out considerably more quickly when growing vegetables in containers than in raised beds, which is a significant difference. This means that you need to constantly check the moisture levels of your soil when growing your Kale in a container. 

If you want full-sized plants, keep in mind that you shouldn’t plant your Kale in a container more densely than you would in a raised bed. What, therefore, is the spacing for producing Kale in containers? Give each plant at least one square foot of space if it is full size.

When planting Kale in rows, thin your seedlings or space your transplants so that there are 2-3 feet between each row and a distance of 12 to 18 inches between each. Other vegetables such as broccoli can also be thinned.

After asking several other gardeners and combining it with my years of experience, I found the right spacing for Kale in rows is 12 to 18 inches. It is advised to leave 12 to 18 inches between plants so you can easily harvest and check each one to make sure it receives enough sunlight and water. Additionally, the above spacing permits sufficient airflow to prevent fungus infections.

Spacing Baby Kales

Baby Kales

If you aim to eat your Kale as Salad, you may need to harvest them when they are young. The spacing recommendations are the same whether you are planting baby greens in containers, raised beds, or rows. 

Start by spacing your seeds about an inch apart when planting seeds for a yield of tiny greens. Thin the seedlings at any growth stage, then use the trimmed greens as a garnish or in salads.

Kale seedlings can be consumed at any growth stage, even as tiny microgreens. Throughout the growing season, keep thinning your seedlings until they are 4–8 inches apart. 

By continuously picking young, fragile leaves, you can prevent the vegetables from developing and growing too large, requiring less space. The recommendation is 4-8 inches apart if you are growing them as transplants. 

Can Kale Plants Be Crowded? 

The proper spacing between these lush greens might mean the difference between a plentiful and limited harvest.

Leaving enough space around your plants will help to guarantee that the leaves receive enough sunlight, producing robust, healthy crops.

It is much simpler to properly harvest your greens when you can easily recognize each plant rather than picking through a pile of tangled leaves.

It is also simpler to check for cabbage worms and other pests when the crops are kept well-spaced rather than packed.

Ensuring adequate airflow around leaves aids in preventing fungal infections and facilitates the detection of early illness symptoms. So, no. Your Kale cannot and should not be crowded. 

Kale Companion Plant Spacing

Companion planting helps you place plants in your garden in a way that guarantees the best results. Other plants might be used as companions by serving a purpose, like a groundcover. Space kale companion plants at 2 to3 inches from each other and 4 to 6 inches from the kale row

Spreading plants can be used as a ground cover to retain soil moisture, control temperatures, and prevent weed seeds from sprouting, and this spares the veggies from competing with weeds for nutrients in the soil. In light of the above explanation, let us look at some plants that can be used as Kale companions. 

  • Some of the greatest plants to grow next to Kale are alliums. Plants in the allium family include garlic, chives, shallots, leeks, and onions. With their potent aroma and the oils they release, members of the allium family can resist common pests such as aphids, flea beetles, and cabbage looper. These are pests that attack Kales. 

In addition to its various culinary applications, garlic provides several health advantages. Since Kale can taste sweeter after a frost, garlic pairs well with a kale companion plant, and garlic will grow well in climates with a cool dormant period. Try starting or seeding onions close to the Kale.

  • Legumes are also great companion plants to Kales. Pole beans and bush beans are legume family members that can be planted alongside Kale. What are the advantages of planting beans near Kale? Beans can take nitrogen from the air and turn it into easily available nitrogen in the soil to encourage development, including the Kale’s beautiful green leaves. 

Bush and pole beans are great kale companion plants since they are leafy greens and heavy nitrogen feeders. Make sure to trellis pole beans so that they don’t shade your Kale. When arranging bush beans next to your Kale, please consider their mature height and spacing.

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