(60 days) Open-pollinated. Because of their cold hardiness, collards were a miracle crop that sustained many southern folks through the winters during the Great Depression. Vates is the acronym for Virginia Truck Experiment Station, a hotbed of collard research from 1907-1967. Introduced in the 1930s, this was probably the best-known of all the many developed there. Large upright 1½–2' plants give generous harvests of dark green thick crumpled leaves with a mild cabbage-like flavor. Will overwinter in high tunnels in our climate.
The best environment to grow collard green or mustard greens is in full sun with plentiful, consistent moisture to thrive in your garden. Greens are frost tolerant, so growing them as a late season crop is ideal. Planting greens can also be done in early spring for a summer harvest, but more watering is likely necessary for them to grow successfully during the summer heat. Use insect netting to help protect from early insect infestations. Collards are best consumed in gumbo, braised, or sauteed.
COMMON PESTS: Aphids, Wihteflies
SUSCEPTIBLE TO: Bolting, Mosaic Virus, Fusarium Wilt