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Broccoli and Kale—Green, Cool-Season Superfoods

Broccoli and Kale—Green, Cool-Season Superfoods

Broccoli is one of our most popular veggies due to its crisp texture and unique flavor, combined with its nutritional value and its recently discovered importance as a toxin-cleansing agent for our bodies. This cool-weather crop is loaded with Vitamins C, K and B-complex, as well as numerous minerals. In fact, due to the body’s ability to absorb calcium from broccoli more effectively than from milk, broccoli is richer in calcium than milk! Choose our modern hybrids ‘Gypsy’ and ‘Packman’ or old heirloom ‘Waltham 29,’ or better still, plant some of each to get the best health boosts from all three types.

‘Waltham 29’ Broccoli, an old Northeastern variety reliably producing beautiful, dark blue-green, 4-6-inch heads in 74 days from seeding since 1950. Uniform high yields with good color and excellent cold resistance, and perfect for either cooking fresh or freezing.

‘Gypsy Hybrid’ Broccoli is the most heat tolerant of all varieties, handling warm summer conditions, yet performing well in cool fall conditions as well. It produces uniform, high-quality, 6-inch, dome-shaped heads, which are ideal for bunching and crown cuts. Resistant to Downy Mildew.

‘Packman Hybrid’ Broccoli is the earliest, most popular broccoli, consistently producing huge, domed, tightly-packed heads growing 8 to 10 inches across—maturing in just 54 days. A very early and prolific yielder, it keeps its quality in high temperatures, and features excellent side-shoot development for longer harvest after the main head is cut. Packman is perfect for freezing.

Kale might not be as well known as other leafy greens, but in terms of healthy attributes, there are none better. Kale is extremely rich in antioxidants—carotenoids and flavonoids—which are reported to fight against the formation of cancerous cells. Try both of our varieties: a curly, blue-green type called ‘Dwarf Blue Curled’ and a serrated-leafed, red version called ‘Red Russian.’ All kales can be harvested via the cut-and-come-again method.

‘Dwarf Blue Curled’ Kale yields a bounty of sweet, succulent, tightly curled blue-green leaves in just 56 days, which are a healthy source of iron and vitamins. Colorful, attractive, slow-bolting leaves grow to only 14 inches and are excellent fresh or cooked. Its flavor is improved by frost, and it is widely adapted to different soils and growing conditions.

‘Red Russian’ Kale can be harvested in just 25 days for baby leaves, and at 50 days for mature, beautiful, serrated, frilly, red-veined, red-green leaves that are tender, mild and sweet. It tolerates cold so well that it can be harvested into early winter. Use it steamed, in salads or stir-fry. Since it grows only 10-12 inches tall, it’s beautiful in patio pots!

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