Picture Sundays: Feral Chard

A two year old Swiss chard plant that never gets any water. It’s growing in a bed I’m not using right now. It’s huge, insect free, and growing better than the vegetables I pay attention to.

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  1. I have some growing in a flower border I ignored and some of it went to seed. I scattered them around hoping it’s found a place it’s happy and I will be able to ignore the offspring (except when picking it). I give the largest leaves to the chickens, which they enjoy. I sew some new plants starting the other day so it may work out well. That is the same area where my arugula has gone crazy and reseeded too.

  2. I have some chard, artichokes and rhubarb that just never give up…they’ve been frozen, picked to death by chickens, fried and drowned…always growing…you bet I’ve saved the seed and shared.

  3. I have some rogue chard that grows just at the edge of a flowerbed. It isn’t totally huge (yet), but that stuff is tough! (And pretty enough to keep in the flowerbed, too!)

  4. What is that all about? That happens to me all of the time. I’ve decided that I should just plant the whole garden and then walk away. It seems to do better without me!

  5. It dipped to a wind-scoured 22 degrees last night here in Piedmont NC, yet my Swiss Chard is thriving in a bed of sprouted wheat straw. I planted it from seed last February, grew it in the church community garden all summer, then scooped it up and brought it home to see if it would overwinter. Did it ever. Chard and Lacinato kale rock my world! Best wishes.

  6. Yes! I have some INCREDIBLY hardy swiss chard. I was clearing out my seeds last winter and came across a bag of miscellaneous fall “greens.” I threw them all out into the garden and lo and behold, as soon as the temp got around 45, the chard started sprouting. By the time I needed to plant other things in the garden, there were about 10 well established chard babies in glorious rainbow colors. I not-so-tenderly dug them up and slapped them into two of my raised beds as border plants. I began harvesting them as they grew larger leaves, and decided to enjoy them because I knew the 100 degree, 80% humidity Kentucky summers would do them in.

    But they didn’t die. They flourished. And here it is winter again. They’ve been sleeted on, snowed on, and flash frozen by single digit winds hitting them at 30 mph. Every time, I think, “This is the end!” But no…as soon as the temp rises a little, they perk right back up and start churning out beautiful, delicious foliage again. I would save seeds from them, but I’m beginning to think they’ll live forever, never flowering!! Very, very grateful for them, though. Having fresh, nutritious greens in the dead of winter has kept me sane.

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