Planting Leeks - Knowledgebase Question

Dunmore, PA
Question by jacks2
November 19, 1997
What are the special instructions for planting leeks so that they grow nice and thick. Mine look like a green onion (scallion).


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Answer from NGA
November 19, 1997

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Leeks need a long growing season to size up. I'd start seeds about 10-12 weeks before the last frost date in your area. Start them indoors as you would onions (in a large flat with soiless potting soil). Cut them back every few weeks to keep the topsfrom getting leggy and promote root growth. When transplanting out, choose a well drained, loamy soil spot amended with 3-4 inch layer of compost. Mix in the compost well, dig a 6-8 inch deep trench and plant the individual leek seedlings about 8-10 inches apart. If you plant them too close together, they will be thinner in fall. Hill up the soil around the leeks as they grow and keep them weeded and watered into the fall.
Some varieties produce larger leeks than others. Try 'Winter Giant' available from Seeds of Change, Sants Fe, NM, www.seedsofchange.com and 'Giant Musselburgh'available from Nichols Garden Nursery, Albany, OR, www.pacificharbor.com/nichols/. Good luck.

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