Harvesting Swiss chard from summer to spring - this is how it works

Harvesting Swiss chard from summer to spring - this is how it works

Harvest stalked chard from the outside

With stem chard, also known as rib chard, you harvest the leaves from the outside in. The chard heart remains intact and the plant can grow back. It is best to break off the individual leaves just above the beet-like roots. Then nothing remains that may later rot. You can also cut off the outer leaves with a knife or scissors. Harvest only as much Swiss chard as you need. Freshly harvested and quickly prepared, the asparagus-like stems taste excellent. Shortly after harvest, leafy vegetables contain these vitamins:

  • Vitamin K: with 414 µg / 100g freshly cooked Swiss chard, it is only surpassed by herbs in terms of vitamin K content
  • Provitamin A: 588 µg / 100g, provitamin A is also known as a carotenoid
  • various B vitamins such as B1, B2, B3 and B6
  • Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron

also read

  • Wintering chard properly
  • Swiss chard for the garden: decorative and rich in vitamins
  • Growing dates for Swiss chard

Long-handled chard can be harvested for the first time 10 to 12 weeks after sowing. Those who sow in April can enjoy Swiss chard from July. Harvesting is possible until the first days of frost. Covered with leaves or fleece, long-handled chard usually survives the winter. In the spring it will continue to grow and you can break off the new leaves as usual. The plant starts to flower in early summer. It dies after the seeds ripen.

Chard leaves sprout again after cutting

You can cut the spinach-like chard leaf two to three fingers wide above the ground, it will push in new leaves after the cut. Chard leaves are ready to be harvested seven days earlier than long-handled chard. Harvest can begin after just 8 to 10 weeks. Smaller leaves taste milder and sweeter than the larger leaves.

Before the chard grows too big, harvest it and freeze it. To do this, chop the chard leaves and blanch them for two minutes. Squeeze out carefully and freeze in portions. Leaves that have grown too large can be used in recipes for stuffing, similar to the cabbage leaves in cabbage rolls.

Tips & Tricks

Chard has a limited shelf life after harvest. When stored in the refrigerator, wrapped in a damp cloth, it will last up to two days. When harvesting, make sure that the harvested leaves are not in the sun.