Growing Kale Indoors: A Gardener’s Guide To Growing Indoor Greens

Growing kale indoors is totally possible and can be totally easy. You just have to make sure the baby kale plants get what they need. Luckily kale is one of the easiest vegetables to grow at home!

Baby Italian Kale in Garden

Types Of Kale To Grow Indoors

There are endless varieties of kale to choose from. Here are two of my favourites for an indoor garden:

  1. Tuscan Kale – Lacinato: A dark, narrow leaf variety with a dimpled surface. Also referred to as “Dinosaur Kale”, this plant makes a lovely ornamental plant, and is the best salad kale. The smoother texture, delicate flavour, and dark green colour make this kale delicious fresh, all by itself. It is also lovely in soups. Lacinato Kale Seeds can be found online: Nero Toscana Italian Dinosaur Kale Seeds (Organic, Heirloom)
  2. Scotch Kale – Dwarf Blue Curled: A frilly-leaved dark variety most similar in appearance to average grocery store baby kale. Curly kale is the best type for making kale chips, and is also a favourite for adding to smoothies. The compact size makes these plants well-suited to urban gardening. Scotch Kale Seeds can be found online: Dwarf Blue Curled Scotch Kale Seeds (Organic, Heirloom)

I grow both Tuscan and Scotch Kale each year. I freeze big batches of both types in the fall for later use in soups and smoothies. Then I can save the kale grown indoors for fresh salads.

The photo below shows the three kinds of kale I grew last year: Russian Kale, Lacinato Kale, and Dwarf Scotch Blue Curled Kale. These types can all be grown indoors as full-sized plants or as baby kale microgreens.

Different Types of Organic Kale | Home for the Harvest Gardening Blog
Russian Kale, Lacinato Kale, and Dwarf Scotch Blue Curled Kale

Where To Place Kale Container Gardens

Place your kale plant containers in an area which receives around 6 hours of sunlight per day. Morning sun is preferable to afternoon sun, as the hot afternoon sun can scorch the plants on a hot day (although it has to be pretty sunny to scotch a kale plant through a window!).

Kale grows nicely in a windowsill garden. Place it near your garden herbs or houseplants so that you remember to water it often. Kale can be grown indoors but it does thrive best outdoors, so save the indoor growing for when growing outdoors doesn’t make sense.

Supplies For Growing Kale Indoors

You only need a few things for growing organic kale indoors:

  • Kale Seeds – your favourite variety (I like Lacinato)
  • Small Cup
  • Filtered Water
  • Plant Container with Drainage Hole(s)
  • Good-Quality Potting Soil (I like mixes that include perlite)
  • Sunny Windowsill (or dedicated LED plant light)
  • Garden Trowel
  • Indoor Watering Can or Cup

How To Grow Kale Indoors

  1. Decide how many kale plants you would like to grow.
  2. Count out two seeds for every kale plant you’d like to grow (just in case!).
  3. Place the seeds in the cup and soak them in filtered water of 4-8 hours.
  4. Place the potting soil in the container and moisten the soil.
  5. Sow seeds  ½ inch deep, about 6 inches apart.
  6. Water the kale each time the soil dries out. Keeping the soil moist is especially important when the plants are still quite young. The moisture will help the seeds germinate and become established.
  7. Harvest mature leaves starting with those at the base or bottom of the plant. Full size leaves may be as big as your hand. Baby leaves from the inside of the plant can be harvested for a special treat.

Yum! That’s how you can get started growing kale indoors.

If you’re looking for an easy all-in-one indoor kale garden, the super-modern AeroGarden System can be used with the Mixed Kale Seed Pods to grow kale indoors in an AeroGrow. They also have pods for growing Mixed Smoothie Greens in an AeroGarden.

How to Grow Organic Kale | Home for the Harvest Gardening Blog

Mary Jane

Mary Jane is a home gardener who loves creating healthy, welcoming spaces (indoors and out!) - About Mary Jane (https://www.homefortheharvest.com/authors/about-mary-jane-duford/)

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