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LEEK


  How To Grow Leek


PLANT TYPE: Annual
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Allium porrum
LIGHT: Full Sun
SOIL TYPE: Rich, well-drained, deep sandy loam
pH RANGE: 6.0 - 6.5
MOISTURE/WATERING: Keep moist, not waterlogged, until well established
MATURITY IN DAYS: 75 -85
KNOWN PESTS: Rarely troubled by pests.
KNOWN DISEASES: N/A



OVERVIEW:

Soil should be prepared for leeks by adding large amounts of compost and manure. Leeks can be planted in late summer and harvested in winter and early spring, or leek can be planted indoors three to four weeks before the last killing spring frost.

Keep the soil moist during early stages of leek development; but as the leek mature, it is best to keep the soil somewhat dry. Leeks add subtle flavor to soups and enhance the taste of many dishes.


PROPAGATION / SOWING OF LEEK:

Start leek indoors 8-10 weeks prior to the last frost. Sow leek seeds ¼” deep and provide a soil temperature of 24°C (75°F) with even moisture. Thin and transplant young leek seedlings once they reach 2” tall into 2¼” Jiffy pots. After all risk of frost, leek seedlings may be set in a trench about 5” deep, filling in enough soil to cover the roots. Space leek plants 6” apart in rows 24” apart. Gradually fill the trenches in during the season. Planting this way blanches the shaft of leeks. Leek Can be direct seeded after risk of frost. As leek grow be sure to hoe the soil up around the plants during the season to blanch the shaft.


COMPANION PLANTING FOR LEEK:

Leeks do well with bush bean, beet, carrot, celery, garlic, onion, parsley, tomato.


CARE & GROWING OF LEEK:

Leeks prefer full sun and a soil pH of 6.0-6.5. Leek are moderate feeders and require very deep, rich soil. Add compost and well rotted manure prior to planting leek. Use mulch to conserve moisture and to keep the weeds down. Good soil moisture helps to keep the leek stems tender and juicy. Water during dry spells.


HARVESTING LEEK:

Harvest leek in late summer or early fall before frost. The leek shafts should be 1½”-2” in diameter. Mulch with straw if frost threatens.












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In crop rotation, leeks follow lettuce, cabbage or peas, but not after lifting early potatoes. This is because the soil will be too loose and leeks do best on a firm soil.






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