Purple Tree Collards
Tree collards came to the U.S. during the the early years of slavery. The plant was normally propagated from cuttings using stem cuttings. All the leaves were removed and then the stem or stalk was stuck into the soil. This is the how it is still propagated today. Normally this species is only available from cuttings but last winter we were extremely fortunate to get seeds. This will allow you to create hardier and more robust forms plus allow you to keep a few seeds for future growing. It is possible some will be hybrids and others are more true to the original cutting grown plants. Tree collards are considered a perennial Brassica but if it hits much below 25 F the plant will unlikely survive the winter. However many of our plants have survived in our polyhouses without supplemental heat during the winter with lows reaching 0 F. Keep in mind this is a seed grown plant of which hybrids are likely. In our taste trials we did notice that even apparent hybrids tasted like a collard than a mixed hybrid. The flavor seems to hold true I guess.
The flavor of the leaves is very mild and just delicious to eat fresh or cooked. Our plants are now 2 months old but are young yet and need staking until they get started. Gardeners in mild climates will find the plant reaching 4-6 ft. tall in one season which can be trimmed to look like a thick Scotch pine Christmas tree if you prune it vigorously. Tree collard stems can be kept in your refrigerator crisper section and stored that way through winter. Just make sure to remove the leaves. Plants can be brought indoors during winter too and can be kept in a sort of a dormancy by putting them on a cool window sill. Oikos Tree Crops is working vigorously on seed and clonal production for this strain as it deserves a place in everyones diet. So delicious and healthful too.
Ships throughout the summer, fall and winter. Well rooted plants in paper pots. Just peel the pot away. No shipment to WA.
Plant SpecsGenus & Species:
25 F more or less. This selection has survived to 15 F in our polyhouses.Height (ft):
5-10Ease of Cultivation:
An easy plant to grow to big sizes. Can tolerate dips to 15 F. Totally delicious and easy to grow like a giant edible evergreen tree.