(Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum)
Photo courtesy of Joshua Hincks
Never buy another over-mature, over-priced Leek from the store again! This disease resistant heirloom variety is so easy to grow, and it’s so much fun to pull your own 12 inches of white-stemmed goodness right out of the ground! This onion relative boasts a mild, sweet, oniony flavor that brings a touch of continental flare to almost any dish be it roasted, sauteed, baked, or even just scattered as a garnish. Establish in late Winter to early Spring for a late Summer to Fall harvest. Plant 5” deep and 6-8” apart. Prefers slightly acidic (pH 6.0 - 6.8) soil rich in organic matter, so mix in compost before transplanting. The secret to developing long, tender “blanched” stems is mounding loose garden soil 2-4” up the stalk beginning when the plant’s diameter is at least equal to a pencil. Nourish monthly with a gentle, balanced fertilizer and frequent shallow watering. Harvest between .5-2” diameter. If left over-Winter it’ll produce white globe flower heads the following Spring for seed collection. Leeks are happy in containers.