Tatsoi Asian Greens
Seed Count: Approx. 200 seeds
Days to Maturity: 55 Days
Description: A distinctly different type of Asian green, Tatsoi is a small, spoon-shaped green that delivers a unique flavor experience. A stocky plant similar to bok choy, Tatsoi is native to China, where it is believed to have been cultivated since 500 AD. This unique, low growing green made its way to Japan during the early Showa period (1312-1317) where the signature mellow, almost creamy, flavor was refined. It's a dependable source of vitamins in cool winter months, but also a very heat tolerant plant. Plant close together for smaller greens, or space further apart to get that beautiful rosette.
How To Grow
Sowing: Since brassicas thrive in cool weather and sweetens with frost, it grows best as a fall crop, however Tatsoi is also a very heat tolerant green. Plant 3 seeds in a cluster, 1/2" deep and 16-18" apart in rows 2-3' apart about 3 months before your first expected frost. For a fall crop, direct sow in July. Chinese cabbages grow best in temperatures between 45-75 F. Thin to the strongest plant when the seedlings emerge. Brassicas appreciate very rich, moist soil that drains well, since they taste best when allowed to grow quickly.
Growing: Keep weeds controlled and conserve moisture by applying mulch. Keep the soil evenly moist, but stop watering after the first frost. Brassicas are very easy to grow, but can be bothered by cabbage aphids, and a variety of caterpillars.
Harvesting: Harvest baby leaves as soon as they grow big enough for salad; harvest bigger leaves as needed. Use a scissors or a knife to cut the leaves, to avoid tearing the stems (multiple harvests are possible if your season is long enough. To harvest the entire plant, cut it off an inch above ground level. To make the fresh leaves last longer in the fridge, dip the stems in water after cutting them; they should stay fresh for up to a month. Brassicas also freeze well once blanched. Expect to harvest well after frost, since most varieties of brassicas can survive freezing temperatures. Brassicas must overwinter before producing seeds; since it survives cold well, a thick layer of mulch should protect it sufficiently, even in colder climates. In the spring, allow it to flower and go to seed. Some of the leaves can still be harvested for eating without damaging the seed development. The tall stalk will develop pods that ripen from the bottom up; wait until the pods turn light brown before harvesting them.